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Printed by J. D. Dewictf, 

46, Barbican. 





Four years have elapsed since I promised to. 
publish the present Essay on the Civil History 
of Chili, as a continuation of the one formerly 
written on the Natural History of that country. 
Engagements of this kind are, however, from 
their nature, conditional. When I undertook 
this work, it was in full confidence of being 
in a short time in possession of the necessary 
materials to complete it. The first volume of 
the Abbe Olivares' manuscript I had then in my 
possession ; this, with what works had appeared 
in print, supplied me with sufficient documents 
until the year 1665 ; and I was in constant ex- 
pectation of receiving from Peru the second 
volume of the same author, in which he has 
brought the subject down to a late period. ' 


In this hope I was disappointed. This yo- 
lume, on which I had so confidently relied, I 
have never received, and have heen in conse- 
quence compelled to seek from various other 
sources the information which it would have 
given me. The wars of the natives with the 
Spaniards being, however, the only proper sub- 
ject of Chilian History, and but two having 
occurred since, the above period, the first in 
1722, and the second in 1767, I have been 
enabled, by the aid of some of my countrymen 
now in Italy, who recollect the principal events, 
to supply in some measure the want of a regular 
detail, and to give a sufficiently accurate ac- 
count of them. Having stated these circum- 
stances, I shall merely observe that, without 
being influenced by national distinctions or 
prejudices, the chief merit to which I aspire 
in this narration is that of impartiality. I have 
related nothing but what I have either found in 
those writers upon Chili who have preceded me, 
or have received from persons of unquestionable 
veracity, and have thought proper to confine 
myself to a plain narrative of facts, and omit all 
reflections that might occur, in order not to 
appear to be too much influenced in favour of 
either of the contending parties. 

The attention of several philologists has of late 
years been directed to the examination of the 
barbarous languages. For this reason I have 


been induced to annex to this work some re- 
marks upon the Chilian tongue, which, from its 
structure and harmony, well merits to be known. 
Several printed and manuscript grammars of this 
language are to be met with, but the one which 
I have principally used is that of Febres, printed 
at Lima, in the year 1765, and deserving of 
particular recommendation for its method and 
its clearness. 




CHAPTER I.— ;Of the Origin, Appearance, and Lan- 
guage, of the Chilians, l 

CHAP. II.— Conquest of the Peruvians, « - 8 

CHAP. III.— State of Chili before the arrival of the Spa- 
niards ; Its Agriculture and Aliment, - - - 12 

CHAP. IV.— Political Establishments ; Government and 
Arts, - 18 

CHAP. V. — First Expedition of the Spaniards to Chili, 

CHAP. VI. — The Spaniards return to Chili, under the 
Command of Pedro de Valdivia ; St. Jago the Capital 
founded ; Various Encounters with the Natives ; Con- 
spiracy of the Soldiers against the General, 

CHAP. VII.— The Copiapins defeat a Body * Spa- 
niards; Successful Stratagem employed by the Quillo- 
tanes; Valdivia receives Reinforcements from Peru; 
He founds the. City of Coquimbo, which is destroyed 
by the Natives; The Promaucians form an Alliance 
with the Spaniards j Foundation of the City of Con- 
ception, - 


CHAP. I.— Local Situation, Character, Dress, and Dwel- 
lings, of the Araucanians, - 

CHAP. II. — Division of the Araucanian State ; Its poli- 
ti cal Form and civil Institutions, 







CHAP. Ill—Military System of the Araueanians ; Their "" 
Arms and Mode of making War, - . fo 

CHAP. IV.— Division of the Spoil ; Sacrifice after War ; 
Congress of Peace, - - - > 70 

CHAP. V.— System of Religion and Funeral Ceremonies, 84 

CHAP. VI.— Division of Time; Astronomical Ideas; 
Measures, - p. 

CHAP. VII.— Rhetoric : Poetry ; Medical Skill ; Com- 
merce of the Araueanians, - - - „■' 10 i 

CHAP. VIII.— Pride of the Araueanians ; Kindness and ; 
Charity towards each other; Mode of Salutation; 
Proper Names, - > _ „ 110 

CHAP. IX.— Matrimony and Domestic Employments, 115 
CHAP. X.— Food; Music and other Diversions, 121 


CHAP. 1.— The Araueanians, under the conduct of Ail- 
Javalu, and afterwards of Lincoyan, attack the Spa- 
niards ; Valdivia makes Incursions into their Territory 
and founds therein the Cities of Imperial, Villarica, 
Valdivia, and Angol, with several other Places, - 129 

CHAP. II.— Canpolican appointed Toqui; He attacks 
the Forts of Arauco and of Tucapei ; The Spanish 
Army entirely defeated, and Valdivia slain, - 140 

CHAP. III.— The Spaniards abandon Puren, Angol, and 
Villarica; Caupolican lays Siege to Imperial and Val- 
divia; Lautaro defeats the Spanish Army in Mariguenu, 
and destroys Conception, . . . 151 

CHAP. IV.— Villagran raises the Sieges of Imperial and 
Valdivia ; The Small Pox breaks out among the Arau- 
eanians; Conception having been rebuilt, Lautaro re* 



J All*. 

turns and destroys it ; He marches against St. Jago, 
snd is killed, - ]£g 

CHAP. V. — Don Garcia de Mendoza arrives at Chili, 
with a Reinforcement of troops; His Expedition 
against Caupolican, - - - - 170 

CHAP. IV.— Bon Garcia orders twelve Ulmenes to be 
hanged ; He founds the City of Canete ; Caupolican, 
attempting to surprise it, is defeated, and his Army en- 
tirely dispersed, - - - , X81 

CHAP. VII. — Expedition of Don Garcia to the Archipe- 
lago of Chiloe; Foundation of Osorno ; Caupolican 
taken and impaled - 


CHAP. VIII. — Successes of Caupolican the Second ; 
Siege of Imperial; Battle of Quipeo fatal to the 
Araucanians; Death of Caupolican; Termination of 
the Government of Don Garcia, - « 194 


CHAP. I. — The Toqui Antiguenu recommences the 
War ; His Successes against Francis Villagran, the Go- 
vernor ; Destruction of Canete ; Sieges of Arauco and 
Conception; Battle of the Bio -bio, - - 203 

CHAP. II.— Paillataru elected Toqui; Government of 
Roderigo de Quiroga ; Conquest of the Archipelago 
of Chiloe; Description of the Inhabitants, - 212 

CHAP. III. — Establishment of the Court of Roval Au- 
dience ; Government of Dou Melchor Bravo de Sara- 
via; Military Operations of Paillataru and his Suc- 
cessor Paynenancu ; Suppression of the Court of Au- 
dience ; Second Government of Quiroga ; Foundation 
of Chilian ; Some Account of the Pehuenches, - 218 

CH P. IV.— Government of the Marquis de Villaher- 
mosa ; His Successes against Paynenancu ; Capture and 



Death of that General ; Enterprises of the Toqui Cay- 
aucura, and his Son Nangoniel ; Landing of the Eng- 
lish in Chili ; Operations of the Toqui Cadeguala, 229 

CHAP. V.— The Toqui Guanoalca takes the Forts of 
Puren, Trinidad, and Spirito Santo ; Exploits of the 
Heroine Jauequeo ; Battles of Mariguenu and Tucapel 239 

CHAP. VI.— The Toqui Paillamachu kills Loyola the 
Governor, and destroys all the Spanish Settlements in 
Araucania, - - - . 249 

CHAP. VII.— Second unfortunate Government of Garcia 
Ramon ; Restoration of the Court of Royal Audience ; 
Ineffectual Negotiation for Peace, - - 262 

CHAP. VIII.— Daring Enterprises of theToquis Lientur 
and Putapichion, - 272 

CHAP. IX.— Continuation of the War - } Third Expedi- 
tion of the Dutch against Chili ; Peace concluded with 
the Araucanians; Its short Duration ; Exploits of the 
Toqui Clentaru ; Series of Spanish Governors, to the 

Year 1720, - - 335 

CHAP. X.— A brief Account of the Wars of the Toquis 
Vilumilla and Curignancu ; Spanish Governors, to the 
Year 1787, - 


CHAP. XL— Present State of Chili, 

An Essay on the Chilian Language, 

APPENDIX. No. I.— Account of the Archipelago of 
Chiloe, extracted chiefly from the Descripcion Historial 
of that Province, by P. F. Pedro Gonzalez de Agueros. 
— Madrid, 1791, - - - - - - 367 

APPENDIX. No. II.— Account of the Native Tribes who 
inhabit the Southern Extremity of South America, ex- 
tracted chiefly from Falkner's Description of Patagonia, 375 







Of the Origin, Appearance, and Language of 
the Chilians. 

THE origin of the primitive inhabitants of 
Chili, like that of the other American nations, is 
involved in impenetrable obscurity; nor have 
they any records, or monuments of antiquity, 
that can serve to elucidate so interesting an 
inquiry. Upon the arrival of the Spaniards 
they were entirely unacquainted with the art of 
writing, and their traditionary accounts are so 
crude and imperfect, that they afford not the least 
degree of rational information to the inquisitive 
mind. Many of the inhabitants suppose that 
they are indigenous to the country, while others 
derive their origin from a foreign stock, and at 

vox,, ii, 

one time say that their ancestors came from the 
north, and at another time, from the west. 

It is a general opinion that America was 
settled from the north-eastern part of Asia, from 
the supposed easy communication between them, 
in consequence of the vicinity of these countries. 
But the opinion entertained by the Chilians, that 
their country was peopled from the west, is not 
so extravagant as at first sight it may appear. 
The discoveries of the English navigators in the 
South Sea have ascertained that between America 
and the southern point of Asia there is a chain of 
innumerable islands, the probable remains of 
some vast tract of land which, in that quarter, 
once united the two continents, and rendered 
the communication between Asia and the opposite 
shore of America easy. From whence it is very- 
possible that, while North America has been 
peopled from the north-west, the south has re- 
ceived its inhabitants from the southern parts of 
Asia, the natives of this part of the new world 
being of a mild character, much resembling that 
of the southern Asiatics, and little tinctured 
with the ferocity of the Tartars. Like the lan- 
guages of the Oriental Indians, theirs is also 
harmonious, and abounds in vowels. The in- 
fluence of climate may undoubtedly affect lan- 
guage so far as to modify it, but can never 
produce a complete change in its primitive struc- 

The Chilians call their first progenitors Pegni 
Epatun, which signifies the brothers Epatun, 
but of these patriarchs nothing but the name is 
known. They also call them glyce, primitive 
men, or men from the beginning, and in their 
assemblies invoke them, together with their 
deities, crying out with a loud voice, Pom, pum,^ 
pum, mari, mari, Epunamun, Amimalguen, Pent 
Epatum. The signification of the three first 
words is uncertain, and they might be considered 
as interjections, did not the word pum, by which 
the Chinese call the first created man, or the one 
saved from the waters, induce a suspicion, from 
its similarity, that these have a similar signifi- 
cation. The lamas, or priests of Thibet, from 
the accounts of the natives of Indostan, are ac- 
customed to repeat on their rosaries, the syllables 
horn, ha, hum, or om, am, urn, which in some 
measure corresponds with what we have men- 
tioned of the Chilians. 

That Chili was originally peopled by one 
nation appears probable, as all the aborigines in- 
habiting it, however independent of each other, 
speak the same language, and have a similar ap1 
pearance. Those that dwell in the plains are of 
good stature, but those that live in the valleys of 
the Andes, generally surpass the usual height of 
man. The purer air which they respire, and the 
continual exercise to which they are accus 
tomed among their mountains, may perhaps be 

the cause of this difference, by imparting greater 
vigour to their frames. The features of both 
are regular, and neither of them have ever dis- 
covered that capricious whim, so common to 
savages of both the old and new world, of at- 
tempting to improve nature by disfiguring their 
faces, with a view of rendering themselves more 
beautiful or more formidable. Of course, M. 
Buffon has been led into an error in asserting, in 
his treatise on man, that the Chilians are accus- 
tomed to enlarge their ears. 

Their complexion, like that of the other Ame- 
rican nations, is of a reddish brown, but it is of 
a clearer hue, and readily changes to white. A 
tribe who dwell in the province of Baroa are of 
a clear white and red, without any intermixture 
of the copper colour. As they differ in no other 
respect from the other Chilians, this variety may 
be owing to some peculiar influence of their 
climate, or to the greater degree of civilization 
which they possess ; it is, however, attributed by 
the Spanish writers to the prisoners of that 
nation, who were confined in this province 
during the unfortunate war in the sixteenth cen- 
tury. But as the Spanish prisoners were equally 
distributed among the other provinces of their 
conquerors, none of whose inhabitants are white, 
this opinion would seem to be unfounded. Be- 
sides, as the first Spaniards who came to Chili 
were all from the southern provinces of Spain, 

where the ruddy complexion is rare, their pos- 
terity would not have exhibited so great a dif- 

On examining the harmony and richness of 
their language, we are naturally led to conclude 
that the Chilians must have, in former times, 
possessed a much greater degree of civilization 
than at present ; or, at least, that they are the 
remains of a great and illustrious nation, ruined 
by some of those physical or moral revolutions 
so common to our globe. The improvement 
and perfection of language constantly follow the 
steps of civilization ; nor can it be easily con- 
ceived how a nation that has never emerged 
from a savage state, that has neither been po- 
lished by laws, by commerce, nor by arts, can 
possess an elegant, expressive, and copious dia- 
lect. The number of words in a language pre- 
supposes a correspondent number of ideas in the 
persons Who speak it, and these among a rude 
people are, and, necessarily must be, very limited. 
So copious is the Chilian language, that, in 
the opinion of those well acquainted with ^it, a 
complete dictionary thereof would require more 
than one large volume ; for, besides the radical 
words, which are very numerous, so great is the 
use of compounds, that, it may almost be said, 
in this consists the very genius qf the language. 
Each verb, either derivatively or conjunctively, 
becomes the root of numerous other verbs and 


nouns, as well adjectives as substantives, which 
in their turn re-produce others that are second- 
ary, modifying themselves in a hundred different 

Nor is there anj part of speech, from which 
an appropriate verb cannot be formed by the ad- 
dition of a final n. Even from the most simple 
particles various verbs are derived, that give 
great precision and strength to conversation. 
But what is truly surprising in this language 
is that it contains no irregular verb or noun. 
Every thing in it may be said to be regulated 
with a geometrical precision, and displavs much 
art with great simplicity, and a connection so 
well ordered and unvarying in its grammatical 
rules, which always make the subsequent depend 
upon its antecedent, that the theory of the lan- 
guage is easy, and may be readily learned in a 
few days. 

This close analogy and regularity, may at a 
slight view induce an opinion little favourable 
to the capacity of those who formed or polished 
this dialect, as the original languages, it is well 
known, were regular in their rude and primitive 
state. But a very different conclusion will be 
drawn by those who examine its structure, and 
attend to the extent and complexity of ideas ne- 
cessary to have formed it, and to have modified 
the words in so many different wavs, Mithout 
embarrassing the particular rules. 

The same language also abounds with harmo- 
nious and sonorous syllables, which give it much 
sweetness and variety ; this is, however, injured 
by the frequent recurrence of the u, a defect 
from which the Latin is by no means exempt. In 
this respect the latter has, however, been fortu- 
nately corrected in its derivatives, particular y 
the Italian, which has studied to avoid, especially 
in the finals, the unpleasant sound resulting from 
the use of that vowel. 

The Chilian differs from every other American 
language, not less in its words than its con- 
struction, with the exception of from eighteen 
to twenty of Peruvian origin, which, con- 
sidering the contiguity of the two countries, is 
not to be wondered at. 

But what may appear much more singular is, 
that it contains words apparently of Greek and 
Latin derivation, and of a similar signification 
in both languages ;* I am inclined, however, to 
think this merely an accidental resemblance. 

* If this is not, as our author supposes, merely a caspalre- 
semllance of a few words, which frequently occurs in Ian* 
auages radically different, it certainly affords much ground 
for curious speculation; and we may, perhaps, I e led to con- 
sider the tradition of a Phenician or Carthaginian colony m 
America, as not altogether so destitute of probability, especially 
as the language of the Chilians, so different from that of any 
Other of tie American tribes, appears to indicate a different 
origin.— Amer. Trans. 




Conquest of the Peruvians in Chili. 

The history of the Chilians does not precede the 
middle of the fifteenth century of our era ; be- 
fore that period, for want of records, it is lost 
in the obscurity of time. The first accounts of 
them are contained in the Peruvian annals; that 
nation/ as they were more civilized, being more 
careful to preserve the memory of remarkable 

About that time the Peruvians had extended 
their dominion from the equator to the tropic of 
Capricorn. Chili, bordering upon that tropic, 
was too important an acquisition not to attract 
the ambitious views of those conquerors. This 
country, which extends for 1260 miles upon the 
Pacific Ocean, enjoys a delightful and salutary 
climate. The vast chain of the Cordilleras bor- 
dering it upon the east, supplies it with an 
abundance of rivers, which increase its natural 
fertility. The face of the country, which is 
mountainous towards the sea, and level near the 
Andes, is well suited to every kind of vegetable 
production, and abounds with mines of gold, 
silver, and other useful metals. 


Favoured by the pleasantness of the country 
and salubrity of the climate, the population at 
this period may be readily imagined to have been 
very numerous. The inhabitants were divided 
into fifteen tribes, or communities, independent 
of each other, but subject to certain chiefs, 
called Ulmenes. These tribes, beginning at the 
north and proceeding to the south, were called 
Copiapins, Coquimbanes, Quillotanes, Mapochi- 
nians, Promaucians, Cures, Cauques, Pencones, 
Araucanians, Cunches, Chilotes, Chiquilanians, 
Pehuenches, Puelches, and Huilliches. 

The Inca -Yupanqui, who reigned in Peru 
about the year U50, being informed of the na- 
tural advantages possessed by Chili, resolved to 
attempt the conquest of it. With this intent he 
marched with a powerful army to the frontiers 
of that kingdom ; but, either through appre- 
hension of his personal safety, or with the view 
of being in a more favourable situation to furnish 
the means of effecting his designs, he established 
himself with his court in the neighbouring pro- 
vince of Atracama, and entrusted the command 
of the expedition to Sinchiruca, a prince of the 
blood royal. 

Preceded, according to the specious custom of 
the Peruvians, by several ambassadors, and fol- 
lowed by a large body of troops, this general 
subjected to the Peruvian government, more by 
persuasion than by force, the Copiapins, Coquim- 


banes, Quillotanes, and Mapochinians. After 
this, having passed the river Rape!, he proceeded 
to attack the Promaucians, who could not be in- 
duced by the persuasions of the ambassadors to 
submit themselves. This nation, whose name 
signifies the free dancers, from their being much 
attached to that diversion, inhabited the delight- 
ful country lying between the rivers Rapel and 
Mauie, and were distinguished from all the 
other tribes by their fondness for every species of 
amusement. The love of pleasure had not, 
however, rendered them effeminate: they op- 
posed the Peruvian army with the most heroic 
valour, and entirely defeated it in a battle, which, 
according to Garcilasso the historian, was con- 
tinued for three days in succession, in conse- 
quence of the continued reinforcements of both 

The Inca, on learning the ill success of his. 
arms, and the invincible valour of the Promau- 
cians, gave orders, that in future the river 
Rapel should serve as the boundary of his do- 
minion on that side. Garcilasso says, that it 
was the river Maule, but it is by no means pro- 
bable, that the conquerors should be compre- 
hended within the territories of the vanquished. 
In fact, not far from the river Cachapoal, which, 
together with the Tinguiririca, forms the Rapel, 
are still to be seen upon a gieep hill, the remains 
of a fort of Peruvian construction, which was 


undoubtedly built to protect that part of the 
frontier against the attacks of the unconquered 

Thus Chili became divided into two parts, the 
one free, and the other subject to foreign domi- 
nation. The tribes, who had so readily sub- 
mitted to the Peruvians, were subjected to an 
annual tribute in gold, an imposition which they 
had never before experienced. But the conquer- 
ors, whether they dared not hazard tho attempt^ 
or were not able to effect it, never introduced 
their form of government into these provinces. 
Of course, the subjected Chilians as well as the 
free, preserved until the arrival of the Spaniards,, 
their original manners, which were by no means 
so rude as many are led to imagine. 


CHAP. Ill, 

State of Chili before the arrival of the Spaniards. 
Its agriculture and aliment. 

Man, in his progress to the perfection of civil 
life, passes in succession through four important 
states or periods. From a hunter he becomes a 
shepherd, next a husbandman, and at length a 
merchant, the period which forms the highest 
degree of social civilization. The Chilians, 
when they were first known to the Spaniards, had 
attained the third state; they were no longer 
hunters but agriculturists. Reasoning from ge- 
neral principles, Dr. Robertson has therefore 
been led into an error in placing them in the 
class of hunters, an occupation which they pro- 
bably never pursued, except on their first esta- 
blishment. Becoming soon weary of the fa- 
tiguing exercise of the chace, in a country 
Where game is not very abundant, and having 
huf few domestic animals, they began at an early 
period to attend to the cultivation of such nu- 
tritious plants, as necessity or accident had made 
known to them. Thus were they induced from 
the circumstances of their situation, and not 


from choice, to pass rapidly to the third period 
of social life. 

These plants, which have heen described in 
the first part of this work, were the maize, the 
magu, the guegen, the iuca, the quitwa, pulse of 
various kinds, the potatoe, the oxalis tuherosa, 
the cemmon and the yellow pumkin or gourd, 
the Guinea pepper, the madi, and the great 
strawberry. To these provisions of the vege- 
table kind, which are far from despicable, may 
he added the little rabbit, the Chiliheuque, or 
Araucanian camel, whose flesh furnished excel- 
lent food, and whose wool, clothing for these 
people. If tradition may be credited, they had 
also the hog and the domestic fowl. Their do- 
minion over the tribe of animals was not ex- 
tended beyond these, although they might as 
readily have domesticated the guanaco, a very 
useful animal, thepudu, a species of wild goat, 
and various birds with which the country 


However, with these productions, which re- 
quired but a very moderate degree of industry, 
they subsisted comfortably, and even with a 
degree of abundance, considering the few things 
which their situation rendered necessary. 

To this circumstance is owing, that the Spa- 
niards, who under the command of Almagro in- 
vaded Chili, found upon their entering its valley 
an abundance of provisions to recruit themselves 


after the hunger which they had endured m 
their imprudent march through the desarts bor- 
dering upon Peru. 

Subsistence, the source of population, being 
thus secured, the country, as before remarked, 
became rapidly peopled under the influence of 
so mild a climate ; whence it appears, that the 
first writers who treated of Chili cannot have 
greatly exaggerated in saying that the Spaniards 
found it filled with inhabitants. It is a fact 
that there was bujfc one language spoken through- 
out the country ; a proof that these tribes were 
in the habit of intercourse with each other, and 
were not isolated, or separated by vast desarts, 
or by immense lakes or forests, which is the case 
in many other parts of America, but which were 
at that time in Chili, as they are now, of incon- 
siderable extent. 

It would seem that agriculture must have 
made no inconsiderable progress among a people 
who possessed, as did the Chilians, a great variety 
of the above-mentioned alimentary plants, all 
distinguished by their peculiar names, a circum- 
stance that could not have occurred except in a 
state of extensive and varied cultivation. They 
had also in many parts of the country aqueducts 
for watering their fields, which were constructed 
with much skill. Among these, the canal, which 
for the space of many miles borders the rough 
skirts of the mountains in the vicinity of the ca- 


pital and waters the lands to the northward of 
that city, is particularly remarkable for its 
extent and solidity. They were likewise ac- 
quainted with the use of the manures, called by 
them vunalti, though from the great fertility of 
the soil but little attention was paid to them. 

Being in want of animals of strength to till 
the ground, they were accustomed to turn it up 
with a spade made of hard wood, forcing it into 
the earth with their breasts ; but as this process 
was very slow and fatiguing, it is surprising that 
they had not discovered some other mode more 
expeditious and less laborious. They at present 
make use of a simple kind of plough, called 
clietague, made of the limb of a tree curved at 
one end, in which is inserted a share formed of 
the same material, with a handle to guide it. 
Whether this rude instrument of agriculture, 
which appears to be a model of the first plough 
ever used, is one of their own invention, or was 
taught them by the Spaniards, is uncertain; 
from its extreme simplicity I should, however, 
be strongly induced to doubt the latter. Ad- 
miral Spilsberg observes, that the inhabitants of 
Mocha, an island in the Araucanian Sea, where 
the Spaniards have never had a settlement, make 
' use of this plough, drawn by two chilihueques, 
to cultivate their lands ; and Fathers Bry, who 
refer to this fact, add, that the Chilians, with 
the assistance of these animals, tilled their 


grounds before they received cattle from Europe, 
However this may be, it is certain that this 
species of camel was employed antecedent to 
that period as beasts of burden, and the transition 
from carriage to the draught is not difficult. 

Man merely requires to become acquainted 
with the utility of any object, to induce him to 
apply it by degrees to other advantageous pur- 

It is a generally received opinion that grain, 
was eaten raw by the first men who employed it 
as an article of food. But this aliment being of 
an insipid taste, and diificult'of mastication, they 
began to parch or roast it; the grain thus cooked 
easily pulverizing in the hands, gave them the 
first idea of meal, which they gradually learned 
to prepare in the form of gruel, cakes, and finally 
of bread. At the period of which we treat, the 
Chilians ate their grain cooked ; this was done 
either by boiling it in earthen pots adapted to 
the purpose, or roasting it in hot sand, an ope- 
ration which rendered it lighter and less viscous. 
But not satisfied with preparing it in this mode, 
which has always been the most usual among 
nations emerging from the savage state, they 
proceeded to make of it two distinct kinds of 
meal, the parched, to which they gave the name 
of murque, and the raw, which they called rugo. 
With the first they made gruels, and a kind of 
beverage which they at present use for breakfast 


instead of chocolate ; from the second tliey pre- 
pared cakes, and a bread called by them couque, 
which they baked in holes formed like ovens, 
excavated in the sides of the mountains and in 
the banks of the rivers, a great number of which 
are still to be seen. Their invention of a kind 
of sieve, called chignigue, for separating the 
bran from the flour, affords matter of surprise ; 
that they employed leaven is, however, still more 
surprising, as such a discovery can only be made 
gradually, and is the fruit of reasoning or obser- 
vation, unless they were led to it by some for- 
tunate accident, which most probably was the 
case when they first began to make use of bread. 
From the above-mentioned grains, and the 
berries of several trees, they obtained nine or 
ten kinds of spiritous liquor, which they fer- 
mented and kept in earthen jars, as was the 
custom with the Greeks and Romans. This re- 
finement of domestic economy, though not origi- 
nating from actual necessity, appears to be 
natural to man, in whatever situation he is 
found ; more especially when he is brought to 
live in society with his fellow men. The dis- 
covery of fermented liquors soon follows that of 
aliment ; and it is reasonable to believe that the 
use of such beverages is of high antiquity among 
the Chilians, more especially as their country- 
abounds in materials for making them. 

VOL. II. c 



Political Establishments, Government, and Arts, 

Agriculture is the vital principle of society 
and of the arts. Scarce! j does a wandering fa- 
mily, either from inclination or necessity, begin 
to cultivate a piece of ground, when it establishes 
Itself upon it from a natural attachment, and, no 
longer relishing a wandering and solitary life, 
seeks the society of its fellows, whose succours 
it then begins to find necessary for its welfare. 
The Chilians, having adopted that settled mode 
of life indispensable to an agricultural people, 
collected themselves into families, more or less 
numerous, in those districts that were best suited 
to their occupation, where they established them- 
selves in large villages, called cava, a name 
which they at present give to the Spanish cities, 
or in small ones, which they denominated lov. 
But these accidental collections had not the 
form of the present European settlements ; they 
consisted only of a number of huts, irregularly 
dispersed within sight of each other, precisely in 


the manner of the German settlements in the 
time of Charlemagne. Some of these villages 
exist even at present in several parts of Spanish 
Chili, of which the most considerable are Larapa, 
in the province of Saint J ago, and Lora, in that 
of Maule. 

But as no civil establishment can exist without 
some form of government, they had in each vil- 
lage or hamlet a chief called Ulmen, who in cer- 
tain points was subject to the supreme ruler of 
the tribe, who was known by the same name. 
The succession of all these chiefs was established 
by hereditary right, a custom that proves the 
antiquity of these political assemblages. Among 
other savage nations, strength, skill in hunting, 
or martial prowess, were the first steps to au- 
thority, and afterwards procured the regal sway 
for those who were invested with command- 
But with'the Chilians, on the contrary, it would 
seem as if wealth had been the means of exalting 
the ruling families to the rank which they oc- 
cupy, since the word almen, unless taken m a 
metaphorical sense, signifies a rich man. The 
authority of these chiefs was probably very 
limited, that is, merely directive, and not coer- 
cive, as that of the rulers of all barbarous nations 
has been, when despotism, favoured by propitious 
circumstances, has not effaced the ideas of ab- 
solute independence, which are in a manner innate 
among savages, as has been the case with the 






greater part of the nations of Asia and of Africa, 
From hence it will not be necessary to investigate 
the laws of these small societies, which were 
probably governed only by usages and customs 
that had been introduced through motives of 
necessity or convenience. 

The right of private property was fully esta- 
blished among the Chilians. Each was absolute 
master of the field that he cultivated, and of the 
product of his industry, which he could transmit 
to his children by hereditary succession. This 
fundamental principle gave rise to the first arts, 
which the wants of nature and their political 
constitution required. They built their houses 
of a quadrangular form, and covered the roof 
with rushes, the walls were made of wood plais- 
tered with clay, and sometimes of brick, called 
by them tlca ; the use of which they doubtless 
learned from the Peruvians, among whom it was 
known by the same name. 

From the wool of the Chilihueque, they ma- 
nufactured cloths for their garments : for this 
they made use of the spindle and distaff, and two 
kinds of looms ; the first, called guregue, is not 
very unlike that used in Europe; the other is 
vertical, from whence it derives its name uthal- 
gue, from the verb utlialen, which signifies to 
stand upright. Their language contains words 
appropriate to every part of these looms, and 


whatever relates to the manufacture of wool. 
They had likewise a kind of needle to sew their 
garments, as is obvious from the verb nuduven, 
to sew ; but of what substance it was made t am 
unable to determine, Embroidery, to which 
they gave the name of dumican, was also known 
to them. 

From these arts of the first necessity, they 
proceeded to those of a secondary kind, or such 
as were required by convenience. With the ex- 
cellent clay of their country, they made pots, 
plates, cups, and even large jars to hold their 
fermented liquors. These vessels they baked in 
certain ovens or holes, made in the declivity of 
hills. They also made use of a mineral earth 
called colo, for varnishing their vessels. It is 
very certain that the art of pottery is of great 
antiquity in Chili, as on opening a large heap of 
stones in the mountains of Arauco, an urn of ex- 
traordinary size was discovered at the bottom. 
For their vessels they not only made use of earth, 
but of hard wood, and even of marble, and 
vases of the latter have been sometimes dis- 
covered that were polished with the greatest 

From the earth they extracted gold, silver, 
copper, tin, and lead ; and, after purifying, em- 
ployed these metals in a variety of useful and 
curious works, particularly the bell-metal copper, 
which is very hard ; of this they made axes,, 


s hatchets, and other edged tools, but in small 

quantities, as they are rarely to be met with 

in their sepulchres ; where, on the contrary, 

hatchets made of a species of basalt are very 

frequently found. It is remarkable, that iron, 

universally supposed to have been unknown to 

the American nations, has a particular name in 

the Chilian language. It is called panilgue, and 

the weapons made of it cliiuquel, in distinction 

from those made of other materials, which 

are comprehended under the general name of 

rtulin. The smith was called ruthave, from the 

verb ruihan, which signifies to work in iron. 

These circumstances give rise to a suspicion that 

they not only were acquainted with this valuable 

metal, but that they also made use of it. But, 

considering the silence of the first writers upon 

America on this subject, notwithstanding the 

inferences that may be drawn from hence, this 

point must always remain undecided, unless 

pieces of iron should be found of incontestible 


They had also discovered the method of 
making salt upon the sea shore, and extracted 
fossil salt from several mountains that abounded 
in that production. These they distinguished 
by different names, calling the first chiadi, and 
the other lilcochiadi, that is, salt of the water of 
rocks. They procured dyes of all colours for 
their clothes, not only from the juice of plants, 


but also from mineral earths, and had discovered 
the art of fixing them by means of the polcura, 
a luminous stone of an astringent qualify. In- 
stead of soap, the composition of which they 
had not discovered, although acquainted with 
lie, they employed the bark of the quillai, which 
is an excellent substitute. From the seeds of 
the madi, they obtained an oil which is very 
good to eat and to burn, though I am ignorant 
whether they ever applied it to the latter purpose. 

Their language contains words discriminative 
of several kinds of baskets and mats, which they 
manufactured from various vegetables. The 
plant called gnoccliia furnishes them with thread 
for their ropes and fishing nets, of which they 
have three or four kinds. They also make use 
of baskets and hooks for taking fish, but of what 
substance the latter are made I am not able to 
determine. The inhabitants of the sea-coast 
make use of pirogues of different sizes, and 
floats made of wood, or of seal skins sewed to- 
gether and inflated with air. 

Although hunting was not a principal occu- 
pation with these people, yet, for amusement, or 
with the view of increasing their stock of pro- 
vision, they were accustomed to take such wild 
animals as are found in their country, particu- 
larly birds, of which there are great quantities. 
For this purpose they made use of the arrow, of 
the sling, and of the laque or noose, already 
€ 4 



described in the preceding part of this work, 
and of several kinds of snares constructed with 
much ingenuity, known bj the general appella- 
tion of guaches. It is a singular fact, that they 
employed the same method of taking wild ducks, 
m their lakes and rivers, as that made use of by 
the Chinese, covering their heads with perfo- 
rated gourds, and letting themselves glide gently 
down among them. These minutiae would per- 
haps be scarcely worth attending to, in an ac- 
count of the manners and discoveries of a people 
well known for their advancement in the arts of 
civilization, but in the history of a remote and 
unknown nation, considered as savage, they be- 
come important and even necessary to form a 
correct opinion of the degree of their progress 
in society. 

With means of subsistence, sufficient to have 
procured them still greater conveniences of living, 
it would seem that the Chilians ought to have 
progressed with rapid steps towards the per- 
fection of civil society. But from a species of 
inertia, natural to man, nations often remain for 
a long time stationary, even when circumstances 
appear favourable to their improvement. The 
transition from a savage to a social life is not so 
easy as at first view may be imagined, and the 
history of all civilized nations may be adduced 
in proof of this proposition. 

The Chilians were also isolated, and had none 


of those commercial connections with foreigners 
which are the only means of polishing a people. 
The neighbouring nations were in a state of still 
greater rudeness than themselves, except the 
Peruvians, a connection with whom, from their 
ambition of dominion they would more studiously 
avoid than cherish They learned, however, 
some things from them during the time that they 
were in possession of the northern provinces, at 
which period they had attained that middle 
point between the savage and civilized state, 
known by the name of barbarism. Notwith- 
standing these unfavourable circumstances, the 
variety of their occupations, which multiplied 
the objects of their attention, gradually enlarged 
the sphere of their ideas. 

They had progressed so far in this respect, as 
to invent the numbers requisite to express any 
quantity, marl signifying with them ten, pataca 
a hundred, and guar mica a thousand. Even the 
Romans possessed no simple numerical terms of 
greater value, and indeed calculation may be 
carried to any extent by a combination of these 
principal decimals. 

To preserve the memory of their transactions, 
they made use, as other nations have done, of the 
pron, called by the Peruvians quippo, which was 
a skein of thread of several colours with a 
number of knots. The subject treated of was 
indicated by the colours, and the knots designated 


the number or quantity. This is all the use that 
I have been able to discover in such a Register, 
in which some authors have pretended to find a* 
substitute for the art of writing. This admirable 
art was unknown to the Chilians ; for although 
the word Chilean, to write, is met with in their 
language, it was originally nothing more than 
a synonym of guirin, which signifies to sketch 
or paint. Of their skill in this latter art, I am 
ignorant ; but if we may form an opinion from 
representations of men that are cut upon certain 
rocks, we must conclude that they were entirely 
unacquainted with it, as nothing coarser or more 
disproportioned can be imagined. 

Far different was the progress which they 
made in the sciences of physic and astronomy, it 
was indeed wonderful ; but an account of these, 
of their religion, their music and military skill' 
I shall reserve till I treat of the Araucanians! 
who still continue the faithful depositories of all 

* The quipos is still used by shepherds in Peru, who 
keep account by it of the number of their flocks, and of the 
day and hour when the ewe yeaned, or the lamb was lost. 

An Italian author, after the publication of M. Grafigny's 
novel, wrote a large quarto volume concerning the quipos. 
He describes every thing relating to quipography, says the 
Limas-Essarist, as confidently as if he had been Quipo-Caniayn 
to the Incas ; but the misfortune is, that all his conjectures are 
erroneous. — E. E. 

Mer curio Peruano, Marzo 17, i?qi, T.l.f. 206. 


the science and ancient customs of the Chilians. 
Their lanauag-e contains also words indicating 
a knowledge of several other arts, which I de- 
cline mentioning, as there are no guides of suf- 
ficient accuracy to conduct our researches into a 
subject so important, and at the same time so 
doubtful. The first Europeans who visited these 
countries, attracted by other objects of far less 
interest, thought little or nothing of those that 
merit the attention of every observing mind, on 
visiting an unknown people. From thence it 
has happened that their accounts, for the most 
part, furnish us only with vague and confused 
ideas, from whence we can draw nothing but 
conjectures. The Chilians, however, remained 
in much the same state of society as I have de- 
scribed, until an unexpected revolution com- 
pelled them, in a great measure, to adopt other 
customs and other laws. 



First Expedition of the Spaniards to Chili. 

Francis Pizarro and Diego Aluiagro having 
put to death the Inca Atahualpa, had subjected 
the empire of Peru to the dominion of Spain. 
Pizarro, desirous of enjoying without a rival 
this important conquest, made at their mutual 
expense, persuaded his companion to undertake 
the reduction of Chili, celebrated for its riches 
throughout all those countries. Almagro, filled 
with Sanguine expectations of booty, began his 
march for that territory in the end of the year 
1535, with an army composed of 570 Spaniards 
and 15,000 Peruvians, under the command of 
Taullu, the brother of the Inca Manco, the 
nominal Emperor of Peru, who had succeeded 
the unfortunate Atahualpa. 

Two roads lead from Peru to Chili ; one is by 
the sea-coast, and is destitute of water and pro- 
vision; the other, for a distance of 120 miles, 
passes over the immense mountains of the Andes. 
This last Almagro took, for no other reason but 
because it was the shortest. His army, after 

having been exposed to infinite fatigue, and 
many conflicts with the adjoining savages, 
reached the Cordilleras just at the commence- 
ment of winter, destitute of provisions, and but 
ill supplied with clothing. In this season the 
snow falls almost continually, and completely 
covers the few paths that are passable in summer. 
Notwithstanding, the soldiers, encouraged by 
their general, who had no idea of the danger of 
the passage, advanced with much toil to the top 
of those rugged heights. But victims to the 
severity of the weather, 150 Spaniards there 
perished, with 10,000 Peruvians, who, being 
accustomed to the warmth of the torrid zone, 
were less able to endure the rigours of the frost. 
The historians who have given an account of 
this unfortunate expedition concur in saying, 
that of all this army not one would have escaped 
with life, had not Almagro, resolutely pushing 
forward with a few horse, sent them timely suc- 
cours and provisions, which were found in 
abundance in Copiapo. Those of the most 
robust constitutions, who were able to resist the 
inclemency of the season, by this unexpected 
aid were enabled to extricate themselves from 
the snow, and at length reached the plains of 
that province, which is the first in Chili, where 
through respect for the Peruvians they were 
well received and entertained by the inhabitants. 
The Inca Paullu, who was well acquainted 



with the object of the expedition, thought that 
nothing would contribute more to raise the 
spirits of his dejected friends, than by letting 
them know the importance of their conquest. 
With this intent, he obliged the peasants to de- 
liver up to him all the gold in their possession, 
and having by this means collected 500,000 
ducats, he presented them to Almagro. The 
Spaniard was so highly pleased, that" he distri- 
buted the whole among his soldiers, to whom he 
also remitted the debts they owed him for the 
immense sums of money that he had advanced 
for the preparation of the enterprize. Being 
persuaded that in a short time he should have all 
the gold of the country at his disposal, he sought 
by this display of liberality to maintain the 
reputation of being generous, which he had ac- 
quired in Peru by his profuse lavishment of the 
treasures of its sovereigns. 

While Almagro remained in Copiapo, he dis- 
covered that the reigning Ulmen had usurped 
the government in prejudice of his nephew and 
ward, who, through fear of his uncle, had fled 
to the woods. Pretending to be irritated at this 
act of injustice, he caused the guilty chief to be 
arrested, and calling before him the lawful heir, 
reinstated him in the government with the uni- 
versal applause of his subjects, who attributed 
this conduct entirely to motives of justice., and a 
wish to redress the injured. 


The Spaniards, having recovered from their 
fatigues through the hospitable assistance of the 
Copiapins, and reinforced by a number of re- 
cruits whom Rodrigo Organez had brought 
from Peru, commenced their march for the 
southern provinces, filled with the most flattering 
hopes, increased by the beautiful appearance of 
the country, and the numerous villages that 
appeared upon all sides. The natives crowded 
round them on their march, as well to examine 
them nearer, as to present them with such things 
as they thought would prove agreeable to a 
people, who appeared to them of a character far 
superior to that of other men. 

In the meantime, two soldiers having sepa- 
rated from the army, proceeded to Guasco, 
where they were at first well received, but were 
afterwards put to death by the inhabitants, in 
consequence, no doubt, of some acts of violence, 
which soldiers, freed from the control of their 
officers, are very apt to commit. This was the 
first European blood spilt in Chili, a country 
afterwards so copiously watered with it. 

On being informed of this unfortunate acci- 
dent, calculated to destroy the exalted opinion 
which he wished to inspire of his soldiers, 
Almagro, having proceeded to Coquimbo, or- 
dered the Ulmenof the district, called Marcando, 
his brother, and twenty of the principal inhabit- 
ants to be brought thither, all of whom, together 


with the usurper of Copiapo, he delivered to 
the flames, without, according to Herrera, pre- 
tending to assign any reason for his conduct. 
This act of cruelty appeared to every one very 
extraordinary and unjust, since among those 
adventurers there were not wanting men of sen- 
sibility, and advocates for the rights of humanity. 
The greater part of the army openly disapproved 
of the severity of their general, the aspect of 
whose affairs from this time forward became 
gradually worse and worse. 

About this period, 1537, Almagro received a 
considerable reinforcement of recruits under 
Juan de Rada, accompanied with royal letters 
patent, appointing him governor of two hundred 
leagues of territory, situated to the southward 
of the government granted to Francis Pizarro. 
The friends whom he had left in Peru, taking 
advantage of this opportunity, urged him by 
private letters to return, in order to take pos- 
session of Cuzco, which they assured him was 
within the limits of his jurisdiction. Notwith- 
standing this, inflated with his new conquest, 
lie pursued his march, passed the fatal Cacha- 
poal, and, regardless of the remonstrances of the 
Peruvians, advanced into the country of the 

At the first sight of the Spaniards, their horses, 
and the thundering arms of Europe, these valiant 
people were almost petrified with astonishment, 


but soon recovering from the effects of surprise, 
they opposed with intrepidity their new enemies 
upon the shore of the Rio-claro. Almagro, 
despising their force, placed in the first line his 
Peruvian auxiliaries, increased by a number 
whom Panllu had drawn from the garrisons; 
but these, being soon routed, fell back in con- 
fusion upon the rear. The Spaniards, who ex- 
pected to have been merely spectators of the 
battle, saw themselves compelled to sustain the 
vigorous attack of the enemy, and advancing 
with their horse, began a furious battle, which 
continued with great loss upon either side, till 
night separated the combatants. 

Although the Promaucians had been very 
roughly handled, they lost not their courage, 
but encamped in sight of the enemy, determined 
to renew the attack the next morning. The 
Spaniards, however, though by the custom of 
Europe they considered themselves as victors, 
having kept possession of the field, were very 
differently inclined. Having been accustomed 
to subdue immense provinces with little or no 
resistance, they became disgusted with an enter- 
prise, which could not be effected without 
great fatigue and the loss of much blood, since, 
in*its prosecution they must contend with a bold 
and independent nation, by Avhom they were 
not believed to be immortal. Thus all, by 
vol. ii. b 


common consent resolved to abandon this ex- 
pedition ; but they were of various opinions 
respecting- their retreat, some being desirous of 
returning to Peru, while others wished to form 
a settlement in the northern provinces, where 
fhey had been received with such hospitality. 

The first opinion was supported by Almagro, 
whose mind began to be impressed by the sug- 
gestions contained in the letters of his friends. 
He represented to his soldiers the dangers to 
which a settlement would be exposed in so war- 
like a country, and persuaded them to follow 
him to Cuzco, where he hoped to establish 
himself either by favour or force. His fatal 
experience of the mountain road, determined 
him to take that of the sea-coast, by which he 
reconducted his troops with very little loss, 
On his return to Peru in 1538, he took posses- 
sion by surprise of the ancient capital of that 
empire; and, after several ineffectual negocia- 
tions, fought a battle with the brother of 
Pizarro, by whom he was taken, tried and be- 
headed, as a disturber of the public peace. 
His army, having dispersed at their defeat, 
afterwards reassembled under the appellation of 
the soldiers of Chili, and excited new disturb- 
ances in Peru, already sufficiently agitated. 
Such was the fate of the first expedition 
against Chili, undertaken by the best body of 


European troops that had as yet been collected 
in those parts. The thirst of riches was the 
moving spring of the expedition, and the* disap- 
pointment of their hopes of obtaining them, the 
eause of its failure. 

B % 



The Spaniards return to Chili, under the com- 
mand of Pedro de Valdivia; St. J ago the 
capital founded ; Various encounters with the 
natives; Conspiracy of the soldiers against 
the general. 

Francis Pizarro having, by the death of his 
rival, obtained the absolute command of the 
Spanish possessions in South America, lost not 
sight of the conquest of Chili, which he con- 
ceived might, in any event, prove an important 
acquisition to him. Among the adventurers 
who had come to Peru were two officers, com- 
missioned by the court of Spain, under the titles 
of governor, to attempt this expedition. To the 
first, called Pedro Sanchez de Hoz, was com- 
mitted the conquest of the country as far as the 
river Maiile ; and to the other, Carraargo, the 
remainder to the Archipelago of Chiloe. Pi- 
zarro, jealous of these men, under frivolous 
pretexts refused to confirm the royal nomination, 
and appointed to this expedition his quarter- 
master, Pedro de Valdivia, a prudent and active 


officer, who had gained experience in the Italian 
war, and, what was a still greater recommenda- 
tion, was attached to his party, directing him to 
take de Hoz.with him, who was probably more 
to be feared than his colleague, and to allow 
him every advantage in the partition of the lands. 
This officer having determined to establish a 
permanent settlement in the country, set out on 
his march in the year 1540, with 200 Spaniards, 
and a numerous body of Peruvian auxiliaries, 
accompanied by some monks, several women, 
and a great number of European quadrupeds, 
with every thing requisite for a new colony. 
He pursued the same route as Almagro, but in- 
structed by the misfortunes of his predecessor, 
he did not attempt to pass the Andes until mid- 
summer. He entered Chili without incurring 
any loss, but very different was the reception he 
experienced from the inhabitants of the northern 
provinces from that which Almagro had me 
with. Those people, informed of the fate of 
Peru, and freed from the submission they pro- 
fessed to owe the Inca, did not consider them- 
selves obliged to respect their invaders. 

They, of course, began to attack them upon 
all sides, with more valour than conduct. Like 
barbarians in general, incapable of making a 
common cause with each other, and for a long 
time accustomed to the yoke of servitude, they 
attacked them by hordes, or tribes, as they ad- 

vanced, without that steady firmness that cha- 
racterizes the valour of a free people. The 
Spaniards, however, notwithstanding the ill- 
combined opposition of the natives, traversed 
the provinces of Copiapo, Co, uimbo, Quil- 
lota, and Melipilla, and arrived much ha- 
rassed, but with little loss, at that of Mapocho, 
now called St. Jago. This province, which is 
more than six hundred miles distant from the 
confines of Peru, is one of the most fertile and 
pleasant in the kingdom. Its name signifies 
"the land of many people/ '■ and from the ac- 
counts of the first writers upon Chili, its popula- 
tion corresponded therewith, being extremely 
numerous. It lies upon the confines of the 
principal mountain of the Andes, and is 140 
miles in circumference. It is watered by the 
rivers Maypo, Colina, Lampa, and Mapocho, 
which last divides it into two nearly equal parts, 
and after pursuing a subterraneous course for 
the space of five miles, again shows itself with 
increased copiousness, and discharges its waters 
into the Maypo. The mountains of Caren, 
which terminate it on the north, abound with 
veins of gold, and in that part of the Andes, 
which bounds it at the east, are found several 
rich mines of silver. 

Valdivia, who had endeavoured to penetrate 
as far as possible into the country, in order to 
lender it difficult for his soldiers to return to 


Peru, determined to make a settlement in this 
province; which, from its natural advantages, 
and its remoteness, appeared to him more suitable 
than any other for the centre of his conquests. 
With this view, having selected a convenient 
situation on the left shore of the Mapocho, on 
the 24th of February 1541, he laid the founda- 
tions of the capital of the kingdom, to which, in 
honour of that apostle, he gave the name of St. 
Jago. In laying out the city he divided the 
ground into plats or squares,' each containing 
4096 toises , a fourth of which he allowed to every 
citizen, a plan that has been pursued in the 
foundation of all the other cities. One of these 
plats, lying upon the great square, he destined 
for the cathedral and the bishop's palace, which 
he intended to build there, and the one opposite 
for that of the government. He likewise ap- 
pointed a magistracy, according to the forms of 
Spain, from such of his army as were the best 
qualified ; and to protect the settlement in case 
of an attack, he constructed a fort upon a hill in 
the centre of the city, which has since received 
the name of St. Lucia. 

Many have applauded the discernment of Val~ 
divia, in having made choice of this situation 
for the seat of the capital of the colony. But 
considering the wants of a great city, it would 
have been better placed fifteen miles farther to 
the south, upon the Maypo, a large river whicl\ 



has a direct communication with the sea, and 
might easily be rendered navigable for ships of 
the largest size. 

This city, however, contains at present ( 1787) 
more than forty thousand inhabitants, and is 
rapidly increasing in population, from its being 
the seat of government, and from its great com- 
merce supported by the luxury of the wealthy 

Meanwhile, the natives saw with a jealous eye 
this new establishment, and concerted measures, 
although late, for freeing themselves of these 
unwelcome intruders. Valdivia, having dis- 
covered their intentions in season, confined the 
chiefs of the conspiracy in the fortress, and sus- 
pecting some secret intelligence between them and 
the neighbouring Promaucians, repaired with 
sixty horse to the river Cachapoal to watch their 
movements. But this measure was unnecessary ; 
that fearless people had not the policy to think 
of uniting with their neighbours in order to 
secure themselves from the impending danger. 

The Mapochinians, taking advantage of the 
departure of the general, fell upon the colony 
with inconceivable fury, burned the half-built 
houses, and assailed the citadel, wherein the in- 
habitants had taken refuge, upon all sides. 
While they defended themselves valiantly, a 
woman, named Inez Suarez, animated with a 
spirit more cruel than courageous, seized an axe, 


and beat out the brains of the captive chiefs* 
who had attempted to break their fetters and 
regain their liberty. 

The battle began at day break, and was con- 
tinued till night, while fresh assailants, with a 
firmness worthy of a better fate, constantly oc- 
cupied the places of those that were slain. In 
the meantime, the commander of the fort, Alonzo 
Monroy, found means during the confusion to 
dispatch a messenger to Valdivia, who returned 
immediately, and found the ditch filled with 
dead bodies, and the enemy, notwithstanding the 
loss they had sustained, preparing to recommence 
the combat ; but, joining the besieged, he ad- 
vanced in order of battle against their forces, 
which were posted on the shore of the Mapocho. 
There the battle was again renewed, and con- 
tested with equal valour, but with great disad- 
vantage on the part of the natives, who were far 
inferior to their enemies in arms and discipline, 
The musketry and the horse made a dreadful 
slaughter among men, who were armed only 
with bows and slings; but, obstinately con- 
tending with even their own impotence, they 
furiously rushed on to destruction until, wholly 
enfeebled, and having lost the flower of their 
youth, they fled dispersed over the plains. 

Yet, notwithstanding this defeat, and others 
of not less importance that they afterwards ex- 
perienced, they never ceased, for the space of six 

. -4S 

years, until tlieir utter ruin, to keep the Spaniards 
closely besieged, attacking them upon every oc- 
casion that offered, and cutting off their pro- 
visions in such a manner, that they were com* 
pelled to subsist upon unwholesome and loath- 
some viands, and on the little grain which they 
could raise beneath the cannon of the place. 
The fertile plains in the neighbourhood had 
become desert and uncultivated, as the inhabit- 
ants had destroyed their crops, and retired to 
the mountains. 

A mode of life so different from what they ex- 
pected, wearied and disgusted the soldiers, and 
they finally resolved to kill their general, whom 
they believed obstinately attached to his plans, 
and to return to Peru, where they hoped to enjoy 
more ease and tranquillity. This conspiracy 
having fortunately been discovered by Valdivia, 
he began by conciliating the least seditious, 
which he readily effected, for he possessed great 
prudence and address. As he had yet only the 
title of general, he assembled the magistracy of 
the city, and persuaded them to appoint him 
governor. Invested with this imposing, though 
less legitimate character, lie punished with death 
the authors of the conspiracy ; but perceiving 
that this exertion of a precarious authority could 
not be productive of a durable effect, he pru- 
dently applied himself to soothe these turbulent 
spirits, awl to divert their pinds from such dan. 


gerous schemes, by painting to them in reducing 
colours the happy prospect that awaited them, 

Valdivia had often heard in Peru that the 
valley of Quillota abounded in mines of gold, 
and imagined that he might obtain from thence 
a sufficient quantity to satisfy his soldiers. In 
consequence, notwithstanding the difficulties 
with which he was surrounded, he sent thither 
a detachment of troops, with orders to super- 
intend the digging of this precious metal. The 
mine that was opened was so rich that its product 
surpassed their most sanguine hopes. Their 
present and past sufferings were all buried in 
oblivion, nor was there one among them who 
had the remotest wish of quitting the country, 
The governor, who was naturally enterprising* 
encouraged by this success, had a frigate built 
in the mouth of the river Chile, which traverses 
the valley, in order more readily to obtain suc^ 
cours from Peru, without which, he was fully 
Sensible, he could not succeed in accomplishing 
Jiis vast undertakings. 



The Copiapins defeat a body of Spaniards; Suc- 
cessful stratagem employed by the Quillotanes ; 
Valdivia receives reinforcements from Peru; 
He founds the city of Coquimbo, which is 
destroyed by the natives; The Promaucians 
form an alliance with the Spaniards ; Founda- 
tion of the city of Conception. 

In the meantime/ 'as the state of affairs was 
urgent, Valdivia resolved to send to Peru bj 
land two of his captains, Alonzo Pvionroy and 
Pedro Miranda, with six companions, whose 
spurs, bits, and stirrups he directed to be made 
of gold, hoping to entice, try this proof of the 
opulence of the country, his fellow-citizens to 
come to his assistance. These messengers, al- 
though escorted by thirty men on horseback, 
who were ordered to accompany them to the 
borders of Chili, were attacked and defeated by 
a hundred archers of Copiapo, commanded by 
Coteo, an officer of the ulmen of that province. 
Of the whole band none escaped with life but 
the two officers^ Monroy and Miranda, who 


were brought covered with wounds before the 

Whilst that prince, who had resolved to put 
them to death as enemies of the country, was 
deliberating on the mode, the ulmena, or princess, 
his wife, moved with compassion for their situa- 
tion, interceded with her husband for their lives, 
and having obtained her request, unbound them 
with her own hands, tenderly dressed their 
wounds, and treated them like brothers. When 
they were fully recovered, she desired them to 
teach her son the art of riding, as several of the 
horses had been taken alive in the defeat. The 
two Spaniards readily consented to her request, 
hoping to avail themselves of this opportunity to 
recover their liberty. But the means they took 
to effect this were marked with an act of ingra- 
titude to their benefactress, of so much the 
deeper dye, as, from their not being strictly 
guarded, such an expedient was unnecessary. 

As the young prince was one day riding be- 
tween them, escorted by his archers, and pre- 
ceded by an officer armed with a lance, Monroy 
suddenly attacked him with a poniard, which he 
carried about him, and brought him to the 
ground, with two or three mortal wounds ; Mi- 
randa at the same time wresting the lance from 
the officer, they forced their way through the 
guards who were thrown into confusion by such 
an unexpected event. As they were well mounted 


tney easily escaped pursuit, and taking their way 
through the desarts of Peru, arrived at Cuzco, 
the residence at that time of Vasca de Castro, 
who had succeeded to the government upon the 
death of Pizarro, cruelly assassinated by the 
partizans of Almagro. 

On being informed of the critical situation of 
Chili, Castro immediately dispatched a consider- 
able number of recruits by land under the com- 
mand of Monroy, who had the good fortune to 
conceal his march from the Copiapins ; and at 
the same time gave directions to Juan Batista 
Pastene, a noble Genoese, to proceed thither by 
sea with a still greater number. Valdivia, on 
receiving these two reinforcements, which ar- 
rived nearly at the same time, began to carry 
his great designs into execution. As he had 
been solicitous from the first to have a complete 
knowledge of the sea-coast, he ordered Pastene 
to explore it, and note the situation of the most 
important parts and places, as far as the straits 
of Magellan. On his return from this expe- 
dition, he sent him back to Peru for new recruits, 
as, since the affair of Copiapo, the natives became 
daily more bold and enterprising. 

Among others, the Quillotanes had, a little 
time before, massacred all the soldiers employed 
in the mines. For this purpose they employed 
the following stratagem : one of the neighbour- 
ing Indians brought to the commander, Gonzalo 


&ios, a pot fuil of gold., telling him that he had 
found a great quantity of it in a certain district 
of the country. Upon this information, all were 
impatient to proceed thitherto participate in the 
imagined treasure. As they arrived tumultuouslj 
at the place described, they fell into an ambus- 
cade, from whence none escaped except the im- 
prudent commander and a negro., whe saved 
themselves by the superior excellence of their 
horses. The frigate that was then finished was 
also destroyed, being burned together with the 

Valdivia, on receiving advice of this disaster, 
hastened thither with his troops, and having re- 
venged, as far as in his power, the death of his 
soldiers, built a fort to protect the miners. Being 
afterwards reinforced with three hundred men 
from Peru, under the command of Francis Villa- 
gran and Christopher Escobar, he became sen- 
sible of the necessity of establishing a settlement 
in the northern part of the kingdom, that might 
serve as a place of arms, and a protection for the 
convoys that should come that way. For this 
purpose he made choice of a beautiful plain at 
the mouth of the river Coquimbo, which forms 
a good harbour, where, in 1544, he founded a 
city called by him Serena, in honour of the place 
of his birth ; it is not, however, known at present 
by this appellation, except in geographical trea- 
tises, the country name having prevailed, as is 


the case with all the other European settlement? 
in Chili. 

In the ensuing year' he began to think of ex- 
tending his conquests, and for that purpose pro- 
ceeded into the country of the Promaucians. 
Contemporary writers have not made mention of 
any battle that was fought upon this occasion ; 
but it is not to be supposed that this valiant 
people who had with so much glory repulsed the 
armies of the Inca and of Almagro, would have 
allowed him, without opposition, to violate their 
territory. It is, however, highly probable, that 
Valdivia, in the frequent incursions which he 
made upon their frontiers, had the art to persuade 
them to unite with him against the other Chilians 
by seducing promises ; a mean that has been 
employed by all political conquerors, who have 
ever availed themselves of the aid of barbarians 
to conqueF barbarians, in order, finally, to sub- 
jugate the whole. In fact, the Spanish armies 
have ever since that period been strengthened by 
Promaucian auxiliaries, from whence has sprung 
that rooted antipathy, which the Araucanians 
preserve against the residue of that nation. 

In the course of the year 1546, Valdivia, 
having passed the Maule, proceeded in his career 
of victory to the river Itata. While encamped 
there in a place called Quilacura, he was at- 
tacked at night by a body of the natives, who 
destroyed many of his horses, and put him in 


imminent hazard of experiencing a total rout. 
His Toss upon this occasion must have been very 
considerable, since he afterwards relinquished 
his plan of proceeding farther, and returned to 
St. Jago. Perceiving that his expected sue-, 
cours from Peru did not arrive, he resolved to 
go thither in person hoping, by means of his 
activity and address, to recruit a body of troops 
sufficient for the subjugation of the southern 
provinces, which had shown themselves the most 

As he was on the eve of bis departure, in the 
year 1547, Pastenes arrived, but without any 
men, and brought news of the civil war that had 
broken out between the conquerors of the empire 
of the Incas. Nevertheless, persuaded that he 
might reap an advantage from these revolutions, 
he set sail with Pastene for Peru, taking with 
him a great quantity of gold. On his arrival, 
he served in quality of quarter-master general 
in the famous battle that decided the fate of 
Gonzalo Pkarro. Gasca, the president, who 
under the royal standard, had gained the vic- 
tory, pleased with the service rendered hin* 
upon this occasion by Valdivia, confirmed him 
in his office of governor, and furnishing him with 
an abundance of military stores, sent him back 
to Chili, with two ships filled with those seditious 
adventurers, of whom he was glad of an oppor- 
tunity tabe disembarrassed, 



In the meantime, Pedro de Hoz, who, as we 
have already observed, had been deprived of 
that share in the conquest that bad been granted 
him by the court, and who had imprudently 
placed himself in the power of his rival, was 
accused of wishing to usurp the government. 
Whether this accusation was well founded, or 
whether it was merely a pretext to get rid of 
him, he was, in 1548, publicly beheaded by 
order of Francis Villagran, who acted as go- 
vernor in the absence of Valdivia, whom he pro- 
bably thought to please by thus freeing him 
from a dangerous competitor, if he had not even 
received private instructions relative to the 

The Copiapins, eager to revenge the murder 
of their prince, killed about the same time forty 
Spaniards, who had been detached from several 
squadrons, and were proceeding from Peru 
to Chili ; and the Coquimbanes, instigated by 
their persuasions, massacred all the inhabitants 
of the colony lately founded in their territory, 
razing the city to its foundation. Francis 
Aguirre was immediately ordered there, and had 
several encounters with them with various suo 
cess. In 1549 he rebuilt the city in a more ad- 
vantageous situation ; its inhabitants claim him 
as their founder, and the most distinguished of 
them boast themselves as his descendants. 

After a contest of nine years, and almost in- 


credible fatigues, Yaldivia, believing himself 
well established in that part of Chili which was 
under the dominion of the Peruvians, distributed 
the land among his soldiers, assigning to each, 
under the title of commandery, a considerable 
portion, with the inhabitants living thuieon, ac- 
cording to the baneful feudal system of Europe. 
By this means, having quieted the restless am- 
bition of his companions, he set out anew on his 
march for the southern provinces, with a respect- 
able army of Spanish and Promaucian troops. 

After a journey of 240 miles, he arrived, 
without encountering many obstacles, at the bay 
of Penco, which had been already explored by 
Pastene, where, on the 5th of October, 1550, he 
founded a third city, called Conception.* 

The situation of this place was very advan- 
tageous for commerce from the excellence of its 
harbour, but, from the lowness of the ground, was 
exposed in earthquakes to inundations of the sea. 
The bay, which is in extent from east to west six 

* This city was destroyed by the earthquakes and inunda* 
tions of the sea, that occurred on the 8th of July, 1730; and 
the 24th of May, 1751. For this reason the inhabitants esta- 
blished themselves, on the 24th of November, 1764, in the 
valley of Mocha, three leagues south of Penco, between the 
rivers Andalien and Bio-bio, where they founded New Con- 
ception. The harbour is situated in the middle of the bay 
called Talgacuano, a little more th^xn two leagues west of 
Mocha; a fort is all the building that is now left at Pensa, 


miles, and nine from north to south, is defended 
from the sea by a pleasant island called Quin- 
quina ; the entrance upon the north side, which 
is half a league broad, is the only one of suf- 
ficient depth to admit ships of the line, the other- 
being narrow, and only navigable for small 
vessels. The soil, under the influence of a fa- 
vourabie climate, produces an abundance of tim- 
ber, minerals, excellent wine, and all the other 
necessaries of life, and the sea and rivers great 
quantities of delicate fish. 

The adjacent tribes, perceiving the intention 
of the Spaniards to occupy this important post, 
gave information of it to their neighbours and 
friends, the Araucanians, who, forseeing that it 
would not be long before the storm would burst 
upon their own country, resolved to succour their 
distressed allies, in order to secure themselves. 
But before I proceed to relate the events of this 
war, I have thought proper to giye some account 
of the character and manners of that warlike 
people, who have hitherto, with incredible 
valour, opposed the overwhelming torrent of 
Spanish conquest, and from henceforward will 
furnish all the materials of our history. 







Local Situation, Character .Dress, and Dwellings 
of the Araucanians. 

THE Araucanians inhabit that delightful 
country situated between the rivers Bio-bio and 
Valdivia, and between the Andes and the sea, 
extending from 36. 44. to 39. 50. degrees of 
south latitude. They derive their appellators 
of Araucanians from the province of Arauco, 
which, though the smallest in their territory, 
has, like Holland, given its name to the whole 
nation, either from its having been the first to 
unite with the neighbouring provinces, or from 
having at some remote period reduced them 
under its dominion. This people, ever enthusi- 
astically attached to their independence, pride 


themselves in being called Auca,* which sig- 
nifies frank or free., and those Spaniards, who 
hud left the army in the Netherlands to serve 
in Chili, gave to this country the name of Arau- 
canian Flanders, or the Invincible State, and 
some of them have even had the magnanimity to 
celebrate in epic poetry the exploits of a people 
who, to preserve their independence, have shed 
such torrents of Spanish blood. 

The Araucanians, although they do not ex- 
ceed the ordinary height of the human species, 
are in general muscular, robust, well propor- 
tioned, and of a martial appearance. It is very 
unusual to find among them any person who is 
crooked or deformed, not from their pursuing, 
as some have supposed, the cruel custom of the 
ancient Spartans, in suffocating such unfortunate 
children, but because they leave to nature the care 
of forming them, without obstructing her ope- 
rations by the improper application of bandages 
and stays. Their complexion, with the ex- 
ception of the Boroanes, who, as I have already 
observed, are fair and ruddy, is of a reddish 
brown, but clearer than that of the other Ame- 
ricans. They have round faces, small animated 
eyes full of expression, a nose rather flat, a hand- 

* According to Falkner the missionary, Aucaes is a name of 
reproach, given them by the Spaniards, and signifying rebels 
or wild-men — aucani is to rebel, to make a riot — anca-cahual 
(cevallo) is a wild horse.— E. E. 

55 - 

some mouth, even and white teeth, muscular and 
well shaped legs, and small flat feet. Like the 
Tartars, thej have scarce any beard, and the 
smallest hair is never to be discerned on their 
faces, from the care they take to pluck out the 
little that appears; they esteem it very impolite 
to have a beard, calling the Europeans, by way 
of reproach, the long beards. The same atten- 
tion is paid to removing it from their bodies, 
where its growth is more abundant ; that of 
their heads is thick and black, but rather coarse ; 
they permit it to grow to a great length, and 
wind it in tresses around their heads ; of this 
they are as proud and careful as they are averse 
to beards, nor could a greater affront be offered 
them than to cut it off. Their women are deli- 
cately formed, and many of them, especially 
among the Boroanes, are very handsome. 

Possessed of great strength of constitution, 
and unincumbered with the cares that disturb 
civilized society, they are not subject, except at 
a very advanced period of life, to the infirmities 
attendant upon old age. They rarely begin to 
be grey before they are sixty or seventy, and are 
not bald or wrinkled until eighty. They are 
generally longer lived than the Spaniards, and 
many are to be met with whose age exceeds a 
hundred ; and, to the latest period of their lives, 
they retain their sight, teeth, and memory, unim- 



Their moral qualities are proportionate to 
their physical endowments; they are intrepid, 
animated, ardent, patient in enduring fatigue, 
ever ready to sacrifice their lives in the service 
of their country, enthusiastic lovers of liberty, 
which they consider as an essential constituent 
of their existence, jealous of their honour, 
courteous, hospitable, faithful to their engage- 
ments, grateful for services rendered them, and 
generous and humane towards the vanquished. 
But these noble qualities are obscured by the 
vices inseparable from the half-savage state of 
life which they lead, unrefined by literature or 
cultivation ; these are drunkenness, debauchery, 
presumption, and a haughty contempt for all 
other nations. Were the civil manners and in- 
nocent improvements of Europe introduced 
among them, they would soon become a people 
deserving of universal esteem; but, under the 
present system, this happy change appears im- 
possible to be effected. 

All those nations whom either the nature of 
the climate or a sense of decency has induced to 
clothe themselves, have made use at first ,of loose 
garments, as being the most easily made. But 
the Araucaniaus, from their great attachment to 
war, which they consider as the only true source 
of glory, have adopted the short garment, as the 
best suited to martial conflicts. This dress is 
made of wool, as was that of the Greeks and 


Romans, and consists of a shift, a vest, a pair of 
short close breeches, and a cloak in form of a 
scapuiary, with an opening in the middle for the 
head, made full and long so as to cover the 
hands and descend to the knees. This cloak is 
called poncho, and is much more commodious 
than our mantles, as it leaves the arms at liberty, 
and may be thrown over the shoulder at pleasure ; 
it is also a better protection from the wind and 
the rain, and more convenient for riding on 
horseback, for which reason it is commonly worn 
not only by the Spaniards in Chili, but by those 
of Peru and Paraguay. 

The shirt, vest, and breeches, are always of a 
greenish blue or turquois, which is the favourite 
colour of the nation, as red is that of the Tartars. 
The poncho is also, among persons of inferior 
condition, of a greenish blue, but those of the 
higher classes wear it of different colours, either 
white, red, or blue, with stripes a span broad, on 
which are wrought, with much skill, figures of 
flowers and animals in various colours, and the 
border is ornamented with a handsome fringe. 
Some of these ponchos are of so fine and elegant 
a texture as to be sold for a hundred and even a 
hundred and fifty dollars. 

The Araucanians make use of neither turbans 
nor hats, but wear upon their heads a bandage 
of embroidered wool, in the form of the ancient 


diadem. This, whenever they salute, they raise 
a little, as a mark of courtesy, and on going to 
war ornament it with a number of beautiful 
plumes. They also wear around the body a long 
woollen girdle, or sash, handsomely wrought. 
Persons of rank wear woollen boots of various, 
colours, and leather sandals, called cliclle, but 
the common people always go bare-footed. 

The women are clad with much modesty and 
simplicity. Their dress is entirely of wool, and, 
agreeable to the national taste, of a greenish blue 
colour. It consists of a tunic, a girdle, and a 
short cloak, called icliella, which is fastened be- 
fore with a silver buckle. The tunic, called 
chiamal, is long, and descends to the feet, it is 
without sleeves, and is fastened upon the shoulder 
by silver brooches or buckles. This dress, sanc- 
tioned by custom, is never varied ; but, to gratify 
their love of finery, they adorn themselves with 
all those trinkets which caprice or vanity sug- 
gests. They divide their hair into several 
tresses, which float in graceful negligence over 
their shoulders, and decorate their heads with a 
species of false emerald, called glianca, held by 
them in high estimation. Their necklaces and 
bracelets are of glass, and their ear-rings, which 
are square, of silver; they have rings upon each 
finger, the greater part of which are of silver. 
It is calculated that more than a hundred thou- 


sand marks of this metal are employed in these 
female ornaments, since they are worn eyen by 
the poorest class. 

I have already given some account of the 
dwellings of the ancient Chilians; the Arauca- 
niaiis, tenacious, as are all nations not corrupted 
by luxury, of the customs of their country, have 
made no change in their mode of building. 
But, as they are almost ail polygamists, the size 
of their houses is proportioned to the number of' 
women they can maintain. The interior of these 
houses is very simple, the luxury of convenience, 
splendour, and show, is altogether unknown in 
them, and necessity alone is consulted in the se- 
lection of their furniture. 

They never form towns, but live in scattered 
villages or hamlets, on the banks of rivers, or in 
plains that are easily irrigated. Their local at- 
tachments are strong, each family preferring to 
live upon the land inherited from its ancestors, 
which they cultivate sufficiently for their sub- 
sistence. The genius Of this haughty people, 
in which the savage still predominates, will not 
permit them to live in walled cities, which they 
consider as a mark of servitude. 




Division of the Araucanicln State ; Its political 
Form and civil Institutions. 


Although in their settlements the Araiicanians 
are wanting in regularity, that is by no means 
the case in the political division of their state, 
which is regulated with much intelligence. They 
have divided it from north to south into four 
uthal-mapus, or parallel tetrarchates, that are 
nearly equal, to which they give the names of 
Iduquen-mapu, the maritime country ; lelbun- 
mapu, the plain country; inapire-mapu, the 
country at the foot of the Andes; and pire- 
mapu, or that of the An$es. Each Utliahnapu 
is divided into five aiUuregues, or provinces; 
and each aillaregue into nine regues, or counties^ 
The maritime country comprehends the pro- 
vinces of Arauco, Tucapel, Iliicura, Boroa, and 
Nagtolten ; the country of the plain includes 
those of EncoL, Puren, Repocura, Maquegua, 
and Mariquina : that at the foot of the Andes 
contains Marven, Colli ue, Chacaico, Quechere- 
gua, and Guanagua ; and in that of the Andes 
is included all the valleys of the Cordilleras, 
situated within the limits already mentioned^ 


which are inhabited by the Puelehes.* These 
mountaineers, who were formerly a distinct na- 
tion in alliance with the Araucanians, are now 
united under their government;, and have the 
same magistrates. 

This division, which discovers a certain degree 
of refinement in their political administration, is 
of a date anterior to the arrival of the Spaniards, 
and serves as a basis for the civil government of 
the Araucanians, which is aristocratic as that 
of all other barbarous nations has been. This 
species of republic consists of three orders of 
nobility, each subordinate to the other, the 
Toquis, the Apo- Ulmenes, and the Ulmenes, all 
of whom have their respective vassals. The 
Toquis, who may be styled tetrarchs, are four in 
number, and preside over the uthal-mapus. The 
appellation of Toqui is derived from the verb 
toquin, which signifies to judge or command ; 
they are independent of each other, but confede- 

* In the second and third articles of the treaty of Lonquil- 
mo, made in the year 1784, the limits of each Uthalmapu are 
expressly defined, and its districts marked out. It declares 
\o be appertaining to that of the Cordilleras, the Huilliches 
of Changolo, those of Gayolto and Paicachoroy to the south, 
*he Puelehes and Indian Pampas to the north, from Malalque 
and the frontiers of Mendoza to the Mamilmapu in the Pampas 
of Buenos Ayres, the whole forming a corporate body with the 
Puelehes and Pehuenches of MaCsle, Chilian, and Antuco. So 
that at present, in case of an infraction of the treaty, it may 
easily heknowa what Uthalmapu is to make satisfaction. 



rated for the public welfare. The Apo-UImenes\, 
or Arch-UImenes,* govern the provinces under 
their respective Toquis. The Ulmenes, who are 
the prefects of the regaes, or counties, are de- 
pendant upon the Apo-Ulmenes. This depend- 
ance, however, is confined almost entirely to 
military affairs. Although the Ulmenes are the 
lowest in the scale of the Araucanian aristo- 
cracy, the superior ranks, generally speaking, 
are comprehended under the same title, which is 
equivalent to that of Cacique. 

The discriminative badge of the Toqui is 
a species of battle-axe, made of porphyry or 
marble. The Apo-Ulmenes, and the Ulmenes, 
carry staves with silver heads, but the first by 
way of distinction have a ring of the same 
metal* around the middle of their staves. All 
these dignities are hereditary in the male line, 
and proceed in the order of primogeniture. 
Thus have the dukes, the counts, and marquisses 
of the military aristocracy of the north been esta- 
blished, from time immemorial, under different 
names, in a corner of South America. 

With its resemblance to the feudal system., 
this government contains also almost all its de- 
fects. The Toqui possesses but the shadow of 
sovereign authority. The triple power that 
constitutes it, is vested in the great body of the 
nobility, who decide every important question, 
in the manner of the ancient Germans, in a ge~ 



iera'1 diet, which is called Butacoyog or Auca- 

oyog, the great council, or council of the Arau- 

anians. This assembly is usually held in some 

rge plain, where they combine the pleasures of 

e table with their public deliberations. 

Their code of laws, which is traditionary, is 

nominated Admapu, that is to say, the customs 

the country. In reality these laws are nothing 

re than primordial usages, or tacit conven- 

te, s that have been established among them, as 

was originally the case with almost all the laws 

©f other nations ; they have, consequently, all 

the defects peculiar to such systems, since, as 

they are not written, they can neither be very 

compendious, nor made sufficiently public. 

The clearest and most explicit of their poli- 
tical and fundamental laws are those that' regu- 
late the limits of each authority ; the order of 
succession in the Toquiates and in the Ulminate9,, 
the confederation of the four Tetrarchates, the 
choice and the power of the commanders in 
chief in time of war, and the right of convoking 
the general diets, which is the privilege of the 
Toquis ; all these laws have for their object the 
preservation of liberty and the established form 
of government. According to them, two or more 
states cannot be held under the rule of the same 
chief. Whenever the male branch of the reign- 
ing family becomes extinct, the vassals recover 
their natural right of electing their own chief 



rated for the public welfare. The Apo-XJImenei 
or Arch-UImenes,» govern the provinces und( 
their respective Toquis. The Ulmenes, who ai 
the prefects of the regnes, or counties,, are d< 
pendant upon the Apo-Ulmenes. This depen< 
ance, however, is confined almost entirely i 
military affairs. Although the Ulmenes are tl 
lowest in the scale of the Araucanian arist< 
cracy, the superior ranks, generally speakin: 
are comprehended under the same title, which 
equivalent to that of Cacique. 

The discriminative badge of the Toqui is 
a species of battle-axe, made of porphyry or 
marble. The Apo-Ulmenes, and the Ulmenes, 
carry staves with silver heads, but the first by 
way of distinction have a ring of the same 
metal" around the middle of their staves. All 
these dignities are hereditary in the male line, 
and proceed in the order of primogeniture. 
Thus have the dukes, the counts, and marquisses 
of the military aristocracy of the north been esta- 
blished, from time immemorial, under different 
names, in a corner of South America. 

With its resemblance to the feudal system, 
this government contains also almost all its de- 
fects. The Toqui possesses but the shadow of 
sovereign authority. The triple power that 
constitutes it, is vested in the great body of the 
nobility, who decide every important question, 
in the manner of the ancient Germans, in a ge- 



neral diet, which is called Butacoyog or Auca- 
toyogt the great council, or council of the Arau- 
canians. This assembly is usually held in some 
large plain, where they combine the pleasures of 
the table with their public deliberations. 

Their code of laws, which is traditionary, is 
denominated Admapu, that is to say, the customs 
of the country. In reality these laws are nothing 
more than primordial usages, or tacit conven- 
tions that have been established among them, as 
was originally the case with almost all the laws 
©f other nations ; they have, consequently, all 
the defects peculiar to such systems, since, as 
they are not written, they can neither be very 
compendious, nor made sufficiently public. 

The clearest and most explicit of their poli- 
tical and fundamental laws are those that regu- 
late the limits of each authority ; the order of 
succession in the Toquiates and in the Ulminates, 
the confederation of the four Tetrarchates, the 
choice and the power of the commanders in 
chief in time of war, and the right of convoking 
the general diets, which is the privilege of the 
Toquis ; all these laws have for their object the 
preservation of liberty and the established form 
of government. According to them, two or more 
states cannot be held under the rule of the same 
chief. Whenever the male branch of the reign- 
ing family becomes extinct, the vassals recover 
their natural right of electing their own chief 


from that family which is most pleasing to them, 
But before he is installed, he must be presented 
to the Toqui of their Uthalmapu, who gives 
notice of his election, in order that the new chief 
may be acknowledged and respected by all in 
that quality. 

The subjects are not, as under the feudal go- 
vernment, liable to a levy, or to any kind of per- 
sonal service, except in time of war. Neither 
are they obliged to pay any contributions to 
their chiefs, who must subsist themselves by 
means of their own property. They respect 
them, however, as their superiors, or rather as 
the first among their equals ; they also attend to 
their decisions, and escort them whenever they 
go out of the state. These chiefs, elated with 
their authority, would gladly extend its limits, 
and govern as absolute masters ; but the people, 
who cannot endure despotism, oppose their pre- 
tensions, and compel them to keep within the 
bounds prescribed by their customs. 

The civil laws of a society whose manners are 
simple, and interests but little complicated, 
cannot be very numerous. The Araucanians 
have but a few ; these, however, would be suf- 
ficient for their state of life, if they were more 
respected and less arbitrary. Their system of 
criminal jurisprudence, in a particular manner, 
is very imperfect. The offences that are deemed 
deserving of capital punishment are, treachery, 


intentional homicide, adultery, tlie robbery of 
any valuable article, and witchcraft. Never- 
theless, those found guilty of homicide can 
screen themselves from punishment by a compo- 
sition with the relations of the murdered. Hus- 
bands and fathers are not subject to any punish- 
ment for killing their wives or children, as they 
are declared, hy their laws, to be the natural 
masters of their lives. Those accused of sor- 
cery, a crime only known in countries involved 
in ignorance, are first tortured by fire, in order 
to make them discover their accomplices, and 
then stabbed with daggers. 

Other crimes of less importance are punished 
by retaliation, which is much in use among 
them, under the name of thaulonco. Justice is 
administered in a tumultuous and irregular 
manner, and without any of those preliminary 
formalities, for the most part useless, that are 
observed among civilized nations. The criminal 
who is convicted of a capital offence, is imme- 
diately put to death, according to the military 
custom, without first being suffered to rot in 
prison, a mode of confinement unknown to the 
Araucanians. It was, however, a little before 
my leaving Chili, introduced into Tucapel, the 
seat of the government of JLauquen-mapu, by 
Cathicurd, the Toqui of that district; but, I 
know not the success of this experiment, which 
was at first very ill received by his subjects 



The Ulmelies are the lawful judges of their 
vassals, and for this reason their authority is less 
precarious. The unconquerable pride of this 
people prevents them from adopting the wise 
measures of public justice; they alone possess 
some general and vague ideas upon the principles 
of political union, whence the executive power 
being without force, distributive justice is ill 
administered, or entirely abandoned to the caprice 
of individuals. The injured family often as- 
sumes the right of pursuing the aggressor or his 
relations, and of punishing them. From this 
abuse are derived the denominations and dis- 
tinctions, so much used in their jurisprudence., 
of genguerin, genguman, genla, &c. denoting 
the principal connections of the aggressor, of 
the injured, or the deceased, who are supposed 
to be authorized, by the laws of nature, to sup- 
port by force the rights of their relatives. 

A system of judicial proceeding so irregular, 
and apparently so incompatible with the existence 
of any kind of civil society, becomes the constant 
source of disorders entirely hostile to the pri- 
mary object of all good government, public and 
private security. When those who are at enmity 
have a considerable number of adherents, they 
mutually make incursions upon each others pos- 
sessions, where they destroy or burn all that they 
cannot carry oif. These private quarrels, called 
malocas, resemble much the feuds of the ancient 


Germans, and are very dreadful when the Ul- 
menes are concerned, in which case they become 
real civil wars. But it must be acknowledged 
that they are generally unaccompanied with the 
effusion of blood, and are confined to pillage 
alone. This people, notwithstanding their pro- 
pensity to violence, rarely employ arms in their 
private quarrels, but decide them with the fist 
or with the club. 





Military System of the Araucanians ; their 
Arms and Mode of making War. 

The military government of the Araucanians i& 
not only more rational and better systematized 
than the civil, but in some respects appears to be 
superior to the genius of an uncultivated nation. 
Whenever the grand council determines to go to 
war, they proceed immediately to the election of 
a commander in chief, to which the Toquis have 
the first claim, as being the hereditary generals 
or stadtholders of the republic. If neither of 
them is deemed qualified for the command, dis- 
missing all regard for rank, they entrust it t<y 
the most deserving of the Ulmenes, or even the 
officers of the common class, as the talents ne- 
cessary for this important station are what alone 
are required. In consequence, Vilumilla, a man 
of low origin, commanded the Araucanian army 
with much honour in the war of 1722; and 
Curignanqa, the younger son of au Ulmen of 
the province of Encol, in that which terminated 
in 1773. 

On accepting his appointment, the new ge- 
neral assumes the title of Toqui, and the stone 


hatchet in token of supreme command, at which 
time the native Toquis lay aside theirs, it not 
being lawful for them to carry them during the 
trovernment of this dictator. They likewise, 
sacrificing private ambition to the public good, 
take the oaths of obedience and fealty to him, 
together with the other Ulmenes. Even the 
people, who in peace shew themselves repugnant 
to all subordination, are then prompt to obey, 
and submissive to the will of their military so- 
vereign. He cannot, however, put any one to 
death without the consent of the principal officers 
of his army, but as these are of his own appoint- 
ment, his orders may be considered as absolute. 

From the arrival of the Spaniards in the 
country to the present time, it is observable that 
all the Toquis who have been appointed in time 
of war were natives of the provinces of Arauco, 
of Tucapel, of Encol, or of Puren. Whether 
this partiality is owing to some superstitious 
notion, or rather to some ancient law or agree- 
ment, I am unable to determine ; it appears, 
however, to be repugnant to the principles of 
sound policy, as it is very rare for the component 
parts of a state to maintain themselves long in a 
state of union, when they do not all participate 
equally in the advantages of the government. 
But it is a peculiarity worthy of admiration, 
that this discrimination has hitherto produced m 
division among them. 


One of the first measures of the national 
council, after having decided upon war, is to 
dispatch certain messengers or expresses, called 
guerquenis, to the confederate tribes, and even to 
those Indians who live among the Spaniards, to 
inform the first of the steps that have been taken, 
and to request the others to make a common 
cause with their countrymen. The credentials 
of these envoys are some small arrows tied to- 
gether with a red string, the symbol of blood. 
But if hostilities are actually commenced, the 
finger of a slain enemy is joined to the arrows. 
This embassy, called pulchitum, to run the arrow, 
is performed with such secrecy and expedition in 
the Spanish settlements, that the messengers are 
rarely discovered. 

The Toqui directs what number of soldiers 
are to be furnished by each Uthalmapu ; the 
Tetrarchs in their turn regulate the contingencies 
of the Apo-Ulmenes, and these last apportion 
them among their respective Ulmenes. Every 
Araucanian is born a soldier. All are ready to 
proffer their services for war, so that there is no 
difficulty in raising an army, which usually con- 
sists of five or six thousand men, besides the 
corps cle reserve, which are kept in readiness for 
particular occasions, or to replace those killed 
in battle. 

The commander in chief appoints his Vice 
Toqui, or lieutenant-general, and the other offi- 


eers of his staff, who in their turn nominate their 
subaltern officers. By this method, harmony 
and subordination are maintained between the 
respective commanders. The Vice To qui is al- 
most always selected from among the Puelches, 
in order to satisfy that valiant tribe, who, as I 
have already observed, amount to the fourth 
part of the population of the state. Nor have 
the Araucanians ever had cause to repent of this 
selection. During the last war, one of these 
mountaineers, Leviantu, lieutenant-general of 
Gurignancu, harassed the Spaniards greatly, 
and gave their troops constant employment. 

The army is at present composed of infantry 
and of horse. It originally consisted entirely 
of the former, but in their first battles with the 
Spaniards, perceiving the great advantage which 
their enemies derived from their cavalry, they 
soon began to discipline themselves in the same 
manner. Their first care was to procure a good 
breed of horses, which in a short time became so 
numerous, that in the year 1568, seventeen years 
after their first opposing the Spanish arms, they 
were able to furnish several squadrons, and in 
the year 1585, the cavalry was first regularly 
organized by the To qui Cadeguala. 

The infantry, which they call namuntulinco, 
is divided into regiments and companies ; each 
regiment consists of one thousand men, and con- 
tains ten companies of one hundred. The ca- 



valry is divided in the like manner, but the 
number of horse is not always the same. They 
have all their particular standards, but each 
bears a star, which is the national device. The 
soldiers are not clothed in uniform, according 
to the European custom, but all wear beneath 
their usual dress cuirasses of leather, hardened 
by a peculiar mode of dressing ; their shields 
and helmets are also made of the same material. 

The cavalry is armed with swords and lances ; 
the infantry with pikes or clubs pointed with 
iron. They formerly employed bows and sliuo^ 
in the use of which they were very dexterous, 
but since the arrival of the Spaniards, they have 
almost entirely relinquished them, experience 
having taught them to avoid the destructive 
effect of their musketry, by immediately closing 
in and lighting hand to hand with the enemy. 

The art of making gun-powder is as yet un- 
known to these warlike people. Either they 
regard it but little, or, what is more probable, 
those Spaniards with whom they have sometimes 
traded, would not, if they were themselves ac- 
quainted with it, communicate to them the com-* 
position. It is, however, believed that they made 
use at first of the greatest exertions to obtain 
the knowledge of this secret so important in the 
present system of warfare. The discovery of 
powder is well ascertained to have been owing 
more to accident than to the efforts of human in- 


f H 

genuity, although some pretend that it was 

'"■ \ 

known in China long before the period that it 


was discovered in Europe. The inhabitants of 


the country relate the following anecdote re- 

specting gun-powder, -which, however fabulous 

and absurd it may appear, is generally credited. 


The Araucanians on first seeing negroes with the 


Spaniards, imagined that they prepared from 

I I 

them the powder which they used. Soon after.. 


having taken one- of those unfortunate men, they 

first covered him with stripes from head to foot, 


and afterwards burned him to a coal, in order, 

by reducing it to powder, to obtain the so much 


wished-for secret, but were soon convinced of 

the fallacy of their chymical principles. In their 


various encounters with the Spaniards, they oc- 

casionally took from them powder and muskets, 


which in the subsequent battles they employed 


with as much skill as if they had been for- a long 


time accustomed to them, but as soon as the 

powder was expended they resumed their former 



The Dutch, when they took the city of Val- 

divia, attempted to form an alliance with them, 


and promised to supply them with powder and 

cannon, but, as they distrusted all the Europeans, 

they would not listen to their proposal. 

Before setting out on his expedition, the ge- 


neral assigns three days for consultation, in order 

to consider anew the plans of the campaign., and to 


adopt the best expedients. Upon this occasion, 
every one has the liberty of offering his opinion, 
if he deems it conducive to the public welfare. 
In the meantime the general consults in secret 
with the officers of his staff, upon the plans that 
he has formed, and the means of remedying si- 
nister events. 

After this, the army commences its march to 
the sound of drums, being always preceded by 
several advanced parties, in order to avoid a sur- 
prise. The infantry, as well as cavalry, proceed 
on horseback, but on coming to action they im- 
mediately dismount, and form themselves into 
their respective companies. Each soldier is 
obliged to bring from home not only his arms but 
his supply of provisions, according to the custom 
of the Romans. As all are liable to military 
service, so no one in particular is obliged to con- 
tribute to the support of the army. The pro- 
vision consists in a small sack of parched meal 
for each, which, diluted with water, furnishes 
sufficient food for them until they are enabled to 
live at free quarters upon the enemy. By adopt- 
ing this mode, the troops, being free and unin- 
cumbered with baggage, move with greater ce- 
lerity, and never lose an opportunity of attacking 
the enemy with advantage, or of making, when 
necessary, a rapid retreat. Frederick the Great, 
of Prussia, and the celebrated Marshal Saxe* 
attempted to restore this ancient method of pro- 


visioning armies; but the European soldiery, ac- 
customed to a different mode of living, were not 
willing to return to that state of primitive sim- 

The Araucanian troops are extremely vigilant; 
they adopt at night the most prudent measures, 
by encamping in secure and advantageous po- 
sitions. On these occasions sentinels are placed 
upon all sides, and in presence of the enemy they 
redouble their precautions, and strengthen the 
posts they occupy with strong entrenchments. 
Every soldier during night is obliged, in order 
to prove his vigilance, to keep up a fire before 
his tent : the great number of these fires serve to 
deceive the enemy, and have at a distance a very 
singular appearance. 

They are besides well acquainted with the art 
of constructing military works, and of protecting 
themselves with deep ditches, which they guard 
with branches of thorn, and strew caltrops in the 
environs to repress the incursions of the enemy's 
horse. In short, there are few military strata- 
gems that they do not employ at a proper time 
and place. The celebrated Spanish poet, who 
fought against them under Don Garcia, ex- 
presses his admiration at meeting with troops so 
well disciplined, and possessing such perfection 
in tactics, which, to use his expressions, the most 
celebrated nations in the world have not been 


able to attain without great trouble, and after a 
long- course of years. 

When an action becomes necessary, they sepa- 
rate the cavalry into two wings, and place the 
infantry in the centre, divided into several bat- 
talions, the files being composed alternately of 
pikemen and soldiers armed with clubs, in such 
a manner that between every pike a club is al- 
ways to be found. The Vice Toqui has the 
command of the right wing, and that of the left 
& committed to an experienced officer. The 
Toqui is present every where as occasion may 
reqoire, and exhorts his men with much elo- 
quence to fight valiantly for their liberties. But 
of this there appears little need, as the soldiers 
manifest such ardour, that their officers have 
snuch more difficulty in restraining their im- 
petuosity than in exciting them to action. Full y 
impressed with the opinion, that to die in battle 
is the greatest honour that a man can acquire in 
this life, on the signal for combat being given, 
they advance desperately, shouting in a terrific 
manner, and notwithstanding the slaughter made 
among them by the cannon, endeavour to pene- 
trate the centre of the enemy. Though they 
know full well that the first ranks will be ex- 
posed to almost certain destruction, they eagerly 
contend with each other for these posts of ho- 
nour, or to serve as leaders of the files. As soon 



as the first line is cut down, the seeond occupies 
its place, and then the third, until they finally 
succeed in breaking the front ranks of the enemy. 
In the midst of their fury they nevertheless pre- 
serve the strictest order, and perform all the 
evolutions directed by their officers. The most 
terrible of them are the club-bearers, who, like 
so many Herculeses, destroy with their iron- 
pointed maces all they meet in their way.* 

* The people of Chili, the bravest and most active anions 
the Americans, ought to be excepted from this observation ; 
they attack their enemies in the open field ; their troops are 
disposed in regular order, and their battalions advance to 
action not only with courage but with discipline. The North 
Americans, although many of them have substituted the tire- 
arms of Europe in place of their bows and arrows, are not- 
withstanding still attached to their ancient manner of making 
war, and carry it on according to their own system ; but the 
Chilians resemble the warlike nations of Europe and Asia in 
their military operations.— Rolertsotfs History of America, 
yo1« ii 



Division of the Spoil ; Sacrifice after the War ; 
Congress of Peace, 

The spoils of war are divided among those who 
have had the good fortune to take them. But 
when the capture has been general, they are dis- 
tributed among the whole in equal parts, called 
reg, so that no preference is shown to any of the 
officers, nor even to the Toqui. The prisoners, 
according to the custom of all barbarous nations, 
are made slaves until they are exchanged or ran- 

According to the admapu, one of these unfor- 
tunate men must be sacrificed to. the manes of 
the soldiers killed in the war. This cruel law, 
traces of which are to be found in the annals of 
almost all nations, is nevertheless very rarely put 
in practice, but one or two instances having oc- 
curred in the space of nearly two hundred years. 
The Araucanians are sensible to the dictates of 
compassion, although the contrary is alleged by 
certain writers, who having assumed as an incon- 
trovertible principle that they never give quarter 
to their enemies, afterwards contradict them- 
selves in mentioning the great number of Spanish 


prisoners who have either been exchanged or 
ransomed after the war. The sacrifice above- 
mentioned, called pruloncon, or the dance of the 
dead, is performed in the following manner : 

The officers, surrounded by the soldiers, form 
a circle, in the centre of which, in the midst of 
four poniards, representing the four Uthalmapus, 
is placed the official axe of the Toqui. The 
unfortunate prisoner, as a mark of ignominy, is 
then led in upon a horse deprived of his ears and 
tail, and placed near the axe, with his face turned 
towards his country. They afterwards give him 
a handful of small sticks and a sharp stake, with 
which they oblige him to dig a hole in the 
ground, in which they order him to cast the 
sticks one by one, repeating the names of the 
principal warriors of his country, while at the 
same time the surrounding soldiers load these 
abhorred names with the bitterest execrations. 
He is then ordered to cover the hole, as if to 
bury therein the reputation and valour of their 
enemies whom he has named. After this cere- 
mony, the Toqui, or one of his bravest com- 
panions, to whom he relinquishes the honour of 
the execution, dashes out the brains of the pri- 
soner .with a club. The heart is immediately 
taken out by two attendants and presented palpi- 
tating to the general, who sucks a little of the 
blood, and passes it to his officers, who repeat 
in succession the same ceremony ; in the mean? 


time he fumigates with tobacco-smoke from hig 
pipe the four cardinal points of the circle. The 
soldiers strip the flesh from tbe bones,, and make 
of them flutes ; then cutting off the head, carry 
it around upon a pike amidst the acclamations 
of the multitude, while., stamping in measured 
pace,, they thunder out their dreadful war-song, 
accompanied by the mournful sound of these 
horrid instruments. This barbarous festival is 
terminated by applying to the mangled body the 
head of a sheep, which is succeeded by a scene 
of riot and intoxication. If the skull should 
not be broken by the blows of the club, they 
make of it a cup called ralilonco, which they 
use in their banquets in the manner of the ancient 
Scythians and Goths. 

On the termination of a war, a congress is as- 
sembled, called by the Spaniards parlamentOj 
and the Araucanians huincacoyag. This is usually 
held in a delightful plain between the rivers Bio- 
bio and Duqueco, on the confines of both terri- 
tories, whither the Spanish President and the 
Araucanian Toqui repair with the attendants 
agreed upon in the preliminary articles. The 
four Uthalmapus send at the same time four de- 
puties, who are usually the Tetrarchs themselves, 
and whose unanimous consent js requisite for 
the establishment and ratification of peace. In 
the congress that was held after the war of 1723, 
vere present one hundred and thirty Ulmenes 


with their attendants, who amounted to the 
number of two thousand men, and the camps of 
the negociating parties were separated by an in- 
terval of two miles. 

The conference is commenced with many com- 
pliments upon either side, and in token of future 
friendship, they bind the staves of the Ulmenes 
with that of the Spanish president together, and 
place them in the midst of the assembly; an 
Araucanian orator then presents a branch of 
cinnamon, which is with them the token of peace., 
and placing his left hand upon the bundle of 
staves, makes in the Chilian language a pertinent 
harangue upon the causes that produced the 
war, and the most eligible means of preserving 
harmony between the two nations. He theii 
proceeds with much eloquence and energy to 
point out the losses and miseries occasioned by 
war, and the advantages that are derived from 
peace, to which he exhorts the chiefs of either 
party in a pathetic peroration. An interpreter 
then explains the precise meaning of all that the 
Araucanian has said. The Spanish president re- 
plies in another speech adapted to the subject, 
which is interpreted in the same manner. The 
articles of the treaty are then agreed-upon, and 
are ratified by a sacrifice of several Chilihueques J 
or Chilian camels, which the Araucanians immo- 
late for the happy continuance of the peace. 
After this the president dines at the same table 

vol. ir. q 


with the Toqui and the principal Ulmenes, to 
whom he makes the customary presents in the 
name of his sovereign.* 

This parliament is renewed as often as a new 
president is sent from Spain to Chili, and cannot 
possibly be dispensed with, as in that case the 
Araucanians, imagining themselves despised, 
would, without any other cause, commence war. 
For this reason, there is always a considerable 
sum ready in the royal treasury for the expenses 
necessary upon these occasions. On the arrival 
of a new president, an envoy, called the national 
commissary, is dispatched in his name to the four 

* In those countries the Araucanians are the most usual, 
most intrepid, and most irreconcileable enemies of Spain. They 
are the only people of the New World who have ventured to 
fight with the Europeans in the open field, and who, employ 
»he sling in order to hurl death at a distance upon their ene- 
mies. They have even the intrepidity to attack the best for- 
tified posts. As these Americans are not embarrassed in 
making war, they are not apprehensive of its duration, and 
hold it as a principle never to sue for peace, the first overtures 
for which are always made by the Spaniards. When these are 
favourably received, a conference is held. The governor of 
Chili and the Indian general, accompanied by the most distin- 
guished officers of either party, regulate amidst the festivity 
of the table the terms of the agreement. The frontier was 
formerly the theatre of these assemblies; but the two last 
were held in the capital of the colony. The savages have 
even consented to alow the residence of deputies among 
them, entrusted with the charge of maintaining harmony be- 
tween the two nations. — Rayncl's History of the Indies, 



Uthalmapus, to invite the Toquis and the other 
Ulmenes to meet him at the place appointed, for 
-the purpose of becoming acquainted with each 
other, and to confirm the friendship contracted 
with his predecessors. In this convention, nearly 
the same ceremonies are practised as are made 
use of on ratifying a treaty of peace. The Ul- 
menes collect upon this occasion in great num- 
bers, not only for the purpose of becoming per- 
sonally acquainted with the new governor, but 
to form an opinion, from his manners and coun- 
tenance, of his pacific or warlike disposition. 
This meeting attracts to the place where it is 
held a great number of merchants, who form 
there a kind of fair, mutually advantageous to 
both nations. 

« 3 



System of Religion and Funeral Ceremonies, 

The religious system of the Araucanians is sim- 
ple, and well adapted to their free manner of 
thinking and of living. They acknowledge a 
Supreme Being, the author of all things, whom 
they call * Pillan, a word derived from pulli or 
pilli, the soul, and signifies the supreme essence ; 
they also call him Guenu-pillan, the spirit of 
heaven; Buta-gen, the great being ; Thalcove, 
the thuoderer ; Vilvemvoe, the creator of all ; 
Vilpepilvoe, the omnipotent; Mollgelu, the 
eternal ; Avnolu, the infinite, &c. 

The universal government of Pillan is a pro- 
totype of the Araucanian polity. He is the 
great f Toqui of the invisible world, and as 
such has his Apo-Ulmenes, and his Ulmenes, to 
whom he entrusts the administration of affairs 

* Pillan is also, according to Dobrizh offer, (T. 2. p. 101) 
their word for thunder. Tupa, or Tupi, in like manner among 
all the Tupi tribes of Brazil, and also the Guarauies of Para- 
guay, equally means thunder and God.—E. E. 

t According to Falkner, his general name among the Mo- 
luche tribes is Toquichen, Governor of the People.— -E, E. 


of less importance. These ideas are certainly 
very rude, but it must be acknowledged that the 
Araucanians are not the only people who have 
regulated the things of heaven by those of the 

In the first class of these subaltern divinities, 
is the Epunamun, or god of war; the Meulen, 
a benevolent deity, the friend of the human race; 
and the Guecubu, a malignant being, the author 
of all evil, who appears to be the same as the Al- 
gue. From hence it appears, that the doctrine of 
two adverse principles, improperly called Mani- 
cheism, is very extensive, or in other words, is 
found to be established among almost all the 
barbarous nations of both continents. These 
being, from the uncultivated state of their minds, 
incapable of investigating the origin of good and 
evil, and deducing inferences from effects, have 
had recourse to the invention of two opposite 
agents, in order to reconcile the apparent con- 
tradiction in the natural and moral government 
of the world. 

The Guecubu* is the Mavari of the Oro- 
noques, and the Aherman of the Persians. He 
is, according to the general opinion of the Arau- 
canians, the efficient cause of all the misfortunes 
that occur. If a horse tires, it is because the 

* Huecuvu, or Huecuvoe, the word is written by Falkner, 
and explained to mean the Wanderer without.— E. E. 



Guecubu has rode him. If the earth trembles, 
the Guecubu has given it a shock ; nor does any 
one die that is not suffocated by the Guecubu. In 
short, this evil being has as great influence over 
calamity as the occult qualities of the Cabalists 
have upon physical effects ; and if his power 
was real, he would be the most active of any 
agent in this nether world. 

The Ulmenes of their celestial hierarchy are 
the Genii, who have the charge of created things, 
and who, in concert with the benevolent Meulen, 
form a counterpoise to the enormous power of 
Guecubu. They are of both sexes, male and 
female, who always continue pure and chaste, 
propagation being unknown in their system of 
the spiritual world. The males are called Gen, 
that is, lords, unless this word should be the 
same as the Ginn of the Arabians. The females 
are called Amei-malghen, which signifies spi- 
ritual nymphs,* and perform for men the offices 
of Lares or familiar spirits. There is not an 
Araucanian but imagines he has one of these m 
his service. Nien cai gni AmcJii-malglien, I 
keep my nymph still, is a common expression 
when they succeed in any undertaking. 

The Araucanians carry still farther their ideas 
of the analogy between the celestial government 

* More properly .peris or fairies, from their obvious resem- 
blance to that aerial class of beings of oriental origin, 


and their own, for as their Ulmenes have not the 
2'ight of imposing any species of service or con- 
tributions upon their subjects, still less in their 
opinion should those of celestial race require it 
of man, since they have no occasion for it. Go- 
verned by these singular opinions, they pay to 
them no exterior worship. They have neither 
temples nor idols, nor are they accustomed to 
offer any sacrifices, except in case of some severe 
calamity, or on concluding a peace ; at such times 
they sacrifice animals and burn tobacco, which 
they think is the incense most agreeable to their 
deities. Nevertheless they invoke them and im- 
plore their aid upon urgent occasions, addressing 
themselves principally to Pillan and to Meulen. 
To this little regard for religion is owing the in- 
difference which they have manifested at the 
introduction of Christianity among them, which 
is tolerated in all the provinces of their domi- 
nion. The missionaries are there much respect- 
ed, well treated, and have full liberty of pub- 
licly preaching their tenets, but, notwithstanding, 
there are but few of the natives who are converted. 
If the Araucamans discover little regard for 
their deities, they are, however, very superstitious 
in many points of less importance. They firmly 
believe in divination, and pay the greatest atten- 
tion to such favourable or unfavourable omens 
as the capriciousness of their imagination may 
suggest to them. These idle observations are 
4 4 


particularly directed to dreams, to the singing 
and flight of birds, which are esteemed by the 
whole of them the truest interpreters of the will 
of the gods. The fearless Araucanian, who 
with incredible valour confronts death in battle, 
trembles at the sight of an owl. Their puerile 
weakness in this respect would appear incom- 
patible with the strength of their intellect, if 
the history of the human mind did not furnish us 
with continual examples of similar contradictions. 
They consult upon all occasions their diviners, 
or pretenders to a knowledge of futurity, who 
are sometimes called Cligua, and at others Dugol, 
among whom are some that pass for Guenguenu, 
Genpugnu, Genpiru, &c. which signify masters of 
the heavens, of epidemic diseases, and of worms 
or insects, and like the Llamas 0/ Tibet, boast 
of being able to produce rain, of having the 
power to cure all disorders, and to prevent the 
ravages of the worms that destroy the corn, 
They are in great dread of the Calais, or pre- 
tended sorcerers, who they imagine keep con- 
cealed by day in caverns with their disciples, 
called Ivunches, man-animal^ and who at night 
transform themselves into nocturnal birds, make 
incursions in the air, and shoot invisible arrows 
at their enemies. Their superstitious credulity 
is particularly obvious, in the serious stories 
that they relate of apparitions, phantoms, and 
hobgoblins, respecting which they have innu- 


merable tales. But in truth, is there any nation 
on earth, so far removed from credulity in that 
particular, as to claim a right of laughing at 
the Araucanians ? They have, nevertheless, some 
among them, who are philosophers enough to 
despise such absurdities, and laugh at the folly 
of their countrymen. 

They are all, however, agreed in the belief of 
the immortality of the soul. This consolatory 
truth is deeply rooted, and in a manner innate 
with them. They hold that man is composed 
of two su'ostances essentially different : the 
corruptible body, which they call anca, and 
the soul, am or pulli, which they say is* an- 
canolu, incorporeal, and mugealu, eternal, or 
existing for ever. This distinction is so fully 
established among them, that they frequently 
make use of the word anca metaphorically, to 
denote a part, the half, or the subject of any 

As respects the state of the soul after its sepa- 
ration from the body, they are not, however, 
agreed. All concur in saying, with the ether 
American tribes, that after death they go to- 
wards tile "West beyond the sea, to a certain place 
called Gulclieman, that is, the dwelling of the 
mm beyond the mountains. But some believe 
that this country is divided into two parts, one 
pleasant, and filled with every thing that is de- 
lightful, the abode of the good j and the other 



desolate, and in want of every thing, the habi- 
tation of the wicked. Others are of opinion 
that all indiscriminately enjoy there eternal 
pleasure, pretending that the deeds of this life 
have no influence upon a future state. 

Notwithstanding they know the difference be- 
tween the body and the soul, their ideas of the 
spirituality of the latter do not seem to be very 
distinct, as appears from the ceremonies prac- 
tised at their funerals. As soon as one of their 
nation dies, his friends and relations seat them- 
selves upon the ground around the body, and 
weep for a long time ; they afterwards expose it, 
clothed in the best dress of the deceased, upon 
a high bier, called pilluay, where' it remains 
during the night, which they pass near it in 
weeping, or in eating and drinking with those of 
who come to console them. This meeting is 
called curicdhuin, the black entertainment, as 
that colour is among them, as well as the Euro- 
peans, the symbol of mourning. The following 
day, sometimes not until the second or the third 
after the decease of the person, they carry the 
corpse in procession to the eltum, or burying- 
place of the family, which is usually situated in 
a wood, or on a hill. Two young men on horse- 
back, riding full speed, precede the procession. 
The bier is carried by the principal relations, 
and is surrounded by women, who bewail the 
deceased in the manner of the hired mourners 


among the. Romans; while another woman, who 
walks behind, strews ashes in the road, to pre- 
Tent the soul from returning to its late abode. 
On arriving at the place of burial, the corpse is 
laid upon the surface of the ground, and sur- 
rounded, if a man, with his arms, if a woman, 
with female implements, and with a great quan- 
tity of provisions, and with vessels filled with 
chica and with wine, which, according to their 
opinions, are necessary to subsist them during 
their passage to another world. They some- 
times even kill a horse and inter it in the same 
ground. After these ceremonies they take leave 
with many tears of the deceased, wishing him a 
prosperous journey, and cover the corpse with 
earth and stones placed it a pyramidal form, 
upon which they pour a great quantity of chica. 
The similarity between these funeral rites and 
those practised by the ancients must be obvious 
to those acquainted with the customs of the 

Immediately after the relations have quitted 
the deceased, an old woman, called Tempuleague, 
comes, as the Araucanians believe, in the shape 
of a whale, to transport him to the Elvsian fields ; 
but before his arrival there, he is obliged to pay 
a toll for passing a very narrow strait to another 
malicious old woman who guards it, and who, 
on failure, deprives the passenger of an eye. 
Jhis fable resembles much that of the ferryman 


Charon, not that there is any probability that 
the one was copied from the other, as the human 
mind, when placed in similar situations, will 
give birth to the same ideas. The soul, when 
separated from the body, exercises in another 
life the same functions that it performed in this, 
with no other difference except that they are un- 
accompanied with fatigue or satiety. Husbands 
have there the same wives as they had on earth, 
but the latter have no children, as that happy 
country cannot be inhabited by any except the 
spirits of the dead, and every thing there is 
spiritual or analogous to it. 

According to their theory, the soul, notwith- 
standing its new condition of life, never loses its 
original attachments, and when the spirits of 
their countrymen return, as they frequently do, 
they fight furiously with those of their enemies, 
whenever they meet with them in the air, and 
these combats are the origin of tempests, thunder, 
and lightning. Not a storm happens upon the 
Andes or the ocean, which they do not ascribe 
to a battle between the souls of their fellow- 
countrymen and those of the Spaniards; they 
say, that the roaring of the wind is the trampling 
of their horses, the noise of the thunder that of 
their drums, and the flashes of lightning the fire 
of the artillery. If the storm takes its course 
towards the Spanish territory, they affirm that 
their spirits have put to flight those of the Spa- 


niards, and exclaim, triumphantly, Inavimen, 
£nav£men;piien> laguvimen ! Pursue them, friends, 
pursue them, kill them! If the contrary hap- 
pens, they are greatly afflicted, and call out in 
consternation, Yavulumen, pum, naniuntumen ! 
Courage friends, be firm ! 

Their ideas respecting the origin of creation 
are so crude and ridiculous, that to relate them 
could serve for little else than to show the weak- 
ness of human reason when left to itself. They 
have among them a tradition of a great deluge, 
in which only a few persons were saved, who 
took refuge upon a high mountain called Theg- 
theg, the thundering, or the sparkling, which 
had three points, and possessed the property of 
moving upon the water. From hence it is in- 
ferible that this deluge was in consequence of 
some volcanic eruption, accompanied by terrible 
earthquakes, and is probably very different from 
that of Noah. Whenever a violent earthquake 
occurs, these people fly for safety to those moun- 
tains which they fancy to be of a similar ap- 
pearance, and which of course, as they suppose, 
must possess the same property of floating on the 
water, assigning as a reason, that they are fearful 
after an earthquake that the sea will again re- 
turn and deluge the world. On these occasions,, 
each one takes a good supply of provisions, and 
wooden plates to protect their heads from being 
scorched, provided the Thegtheg, when raised 


raised by the waters, should be elevated to the 
sun. Whenever they are told that plates made 
of earth would be much more suitable for this 
purpose than those of wood, which are liable 
to be burned, their usual reply is, that their 
ancestors did so before them. 



Division of Time ; Astronomical Ideas ; 

Time is divided by the Araucanians, as with us, 
into years, seasons, months, days, and hours, but 
in a very different method. Their year is solar, 
and begins on the 22d of December, or imme- 
diately after the southern solstice. For this 
reason they call this solstice Thaumathipantu, 
the head and tail of the year, and denominate 
June Udanthip antic, the divider of the year, from 
its dividing it into two equal parts. These two 
essential points they are able to ascertain with 
sufficient exactness by means of the solstitial 
shadows. The year is called Tipantu, the de- 
parture, or course of the sun, as that planet de- 
parts, or appears to depart from the tropic in 
order to make its annual revolution; it is divided 
into twelve months, of thirty days each, as was 
that of the Egyptians and Persians. In order to 
complete the tropical year they add five inter- 
calary days, but 'in what manner they are intro- 
duced I am not able to determine ; it is, how- 
ever, probable they are placed in the last month, 
which in that case will have thirty-five days. 


These months are called generally cujen, or 
moons, and must originally have been regulated 
wholly by the phases of the moon. The proper 
names of them, as near as they can be rendered 
by ours, are the following, which are derived 
from the qualities, or the most remarkable 
things that are produced in each month : 

Inarimu- cujen, 
Thor- cujen, 
Inanthor- cujen, 
Hum- cujen, 
Filial- cujen, 
Jnan-hueul- cujen, 

January — The month of fruit. 
February — The month of harvest. 
March — The month of maize. 
April — The 1st month of the rimu. 
May — The 2d month of the rimu. 
June — The 1st month of foam. 
July — The 2d month of foam. 
August — The unpleasant mouth. 
September — The treacherous month. 
October — The 1st month of new winds. 
November — The 2d month of new winds, 
December — The month of new fruit. 

The seasons, as in Europe, consist of three 
months; the spring is called Peughcn, the summer 
Ucan, the autumn Gualug, and the winter Pu- 
cliam. To render the distribution of the year 
uniform, they also divide the natural day into 
twelve parts, which they call gliagantu, assign- 
ing six to the day and six to the night, in the 
manner of the Chinese, the Japanese, the Ota- 
heitans, and several other nations. Thus each 
gliagantu or Araucanian hour is equal to two of 
ours. Those of the day they determine by the 


height of the sun, and those of the night by the 
position of the stars : but, as they make use of 
no instrument for this purpose, it follows that 
this division, which must necessarily be unequal 
according to the different seasons of the year, 
will be much more so from the imperfect manner 
of regulating it. They begin to number their 
hours as is general in Europe, from midnight, 
and give to each a particular name.* In civil 
transactions, they calculate indifferently, either 
by days, nights, or mornings, so that three days, 
three nights, or three mornings, signify the same 

To the stars in general they give the name of 
huaglen, and divide them into several constella- 
tions, which they ca\l pal, or ritha. These con- 
stellations usually receive their particular appel- 
lations from the number of remarkable stars that 
compose them. Thus the Pleiades are called 
Cajupal, the constellation of six, and the An- 
tarctic Cross, Meleritlw, the constellation of 
four, as the first has six stars that are very ap- 
parent, and the last four. The Milky Way is 
called Rupuepeu, the fabulous road, from a story 
which, like other nations, they relate of it, and 
which is considered as fabulous by the astrono- 
mers of the country. 

* These names, commencing at midnight, are, Puliuen, 
UeurifThipanantUfMaleu, Futamaleu, Ragiantu, Culunavtu, 
Gullantu, Conantu, Gavquenantu, Puni, Ragipan. 
VOL.- II. H 


They are well acquainted with the planets, 
which they call Gau, a word derived from the 
verb gaun, to wash, from whence it may be in 
ferred, that they have respecting these bodies the 
same opinion as the Romans, that at their setting 
they submerge themselves in the sea. Nor are 
there wanting Fontenelles among them, who 
believe that many of those globes are so many 
other earths, inhabited in the same manner as 
ours ; for this reason they call the sky Guenu- 
mapu, the country of heaven ; and the moon 
Cuyen-mapu, the country of the moon. They 
agree likewise with the Aristotelians, in main- 
taining that the comets, called by them Cheruvoe, 
proceed from terrestrial exhalations, inflamed in 
the upper regions of the air ; but they are not 
considered as the precursors of evil and disaster, 
as they have been esteemed by almost all the 
nations of the earth. An eclipse of the sun is 
called by them Layantu, and that of the moon 
Laycujen, that is, the death of the sun or of the 
moon. But these expressions are merely meta- 
phorical, as are the correspondent ones in Latin, 
of defectus soils, aut time. I know not their 
opinions of the cause of these phenomena ; but 
I have been informed that they evince no greater 
alarm upon these occasions than at the most 
common operations of nature. Their language 
contains several words wholly applicable to astro- 
nomical subjects, such as Thoren, the late rising 



of the stars, and others similar, which prove 
that their knowledge in this respect, is much 
greater than what is generally supposed. But 
my researches into their customs, owing to the 
reasons which I have already assigned, were by 
no means so complete as I could have wished 
before I left the country. 

Their long measures are the palm, neia, the 
span, duche, the foot, namun, the pace, tliecan, 
the ell, nevcu, and the league, tupu, which an- 
swers to the marine league, or the parasang of 
the Persians. Their greater distances are com- 
puted by mornings, corresponding to the day's 
journey of Europe. Their liquid and dry mea- 
sures are less^ numerous : the guampar, a quart, 
the can, a pint, and the mencu, a measure of a 
less quantity, serve for the first. The dry mea- 
sures are the chiaigae, which contains about 
six pints, and the glieyu, which is double that 

With regard to the speculative sciences they 
have very little information. Their geometrical 
notions are, as might be expected from an uncul- 
tivated people, very rude and confined. They 
have not even proper words to [denote the prin- 
cipal figures, as the point, the line, the angle, 
the triangle, the square, the circle, the sphere, 
the cube,, the cone, &c. Their language, how* 
ever, as we shall show hereafter, is flexible and 


adapted to every species of composition,, whence 
it would be easy to form a vocabulary of tech- 
nical words to facilitate the acquisition of the 
sciences to the Araucanians. 



Rhetoric; Poetry; Medical Skill; Commerce 
of the Araucanians. 

Notwithstanding their general ignorance, 
they cultivate successfully the sciences of rheto- 
ric, poetry, and medicine, as far as these are at- 
tainable by practice or observation ; for they 
have no books among them, nor any who know 
how to write or read. Nor can they be induced 
to learn these arts ; either from their aversion to 
every thing that is practised by the Europeans, 
or from their being urged by a savage spirit to 
despise whatever does not belong to their country. 
Oratory is particularly held in high estimation 
by them, and, as among the ancient Romans, is 
the high road to honour, and the management of 
public affairs. The eldest son of an Ulmen 
who is deficient in this talent, is for that sole 
reason excluded from the right of succession, 
and one of his younger brothers, or the nearest 
relation that he has, who is an able speaker, sub- 
stituted in his place. Their parents, therefore, 
accustom them from their childhood to speak in 
public, and carry them to their national assem- 


blies, where the best orators of the country dis- 
play their eloquence. 

From hence is derived the attention which they 
generally pay to speak their language correctly, 
and to preserve it in its purity, taking great care 
to avoid the introduction of any foreign word, 
in which they are so particular, that whenever a 
foreigner settles among them, they oblige him to 
relinquish his name and take another in the 
Chilian language. The missionaries themselves 
are obliged to conform to this singular regula- 
tion, if they would obtain the public favour. 
They have much to endure from this excessive 
fastidiousness, as even while they are preaching 
the audience will interrupt them, and with im- 
portunate rudeness correct the mistakes in lan- 
guage or pronunciation that escape them. Many 
of them are well acquainted with the Spanish 
language, both from their frequent communica- 
tion with the neighbouring Spaniards, and from 
having been accustomed to speak a soft, regular, 
and varied language, which readily adapts itself 
to the pronunciation of the European dialects, as 
has been observed by Captain Wallis respecting 
the Patagonians, who are real Chilians.* They, 
however, make but little use of it, none of them 
ever attempting to speak in Spanish in any of 

* Hawkesworth's Voyage of Captain Wallis, 


the assemblies or congresses that have been held 
betvyeen the two nations, on which occasion they 
had much rather submit to the inconvenience 
of listening to a tiresome interpreter, than, by 
speaking another language, to degrade their 
native tongue. 

The speeches of their orators resemble those 
of the Asiatics, or more properly those of all 
barbarous nations. The style is highly figura- 
tive, allegorical, elevated, and replete with pe- 
culiar phrases and expressions that are employed 
only in similar compositions, from whence it is 
called coyagtucan, the style of parliamentary 
harangues. They abound with parables and 
apologues, which sometimes furnish the whole 
substance of the discourse. Their orations, not- 
withstanding, contain all the essential parts re- 
quired by the rules of rhetoric, which need not 
excite our surprise, since the same principle of 
nature that led the Greeks to reduce eloquence 
to an art, has taught the use of it to these people. 
They are deficient neither in a suitable exordium, 
a clear narrative, a well-founded argument, or 
a pathetic peroration. They commonly divide 
their subject into two or three points, which they 
call thoy, and specify the number by saying epu 
thoy-gei tamen pictvin, what I am going to say is 
divided into two points. They employ in their 
oratory several kinds of style, but the most 
H 4 


esteemed is the rachidugun, a word equivalent to 

Their poets are called gempm, lords of speech. 
This expressive name is well applied to them,, 
since possessing that strong enthusiasm excited by 
passions undebilitated by the restraints and refine- 
ments of civi'l life, they follow no other rules in 
their compositions than the impulse of their 
imaginations. Of course, their poetry generally 
contains strong and lively images, bold figures,, 
frequent allusions and similitudes, novel and 
forcible expressions, and possesses the art of 
moving and interesting the heart by exciting its 
sensibility. Every thing in it is metaphorical 
and animated, and allegory is, if I may use the 
expression, its very soul or essence. Unre- 
strained enthusiasm is the prime characteristic of 
all the poetry of savages ; such was that of the 
Bards of the Celts, and the Scalds of the Danes ; 
and the pretended editor of the poems of Ossian 
has discovered an intimate acquaintance with 
the poetic genius of barbarous nations. 

The principal subject of the songs of the 
Araucanians is the exploits of their heroes. I 
would gladly have presentee! to my readers some 
of these compositions, but the difficulty of pro- 
curing them, from the distance of the country, 
has not permitted me to do it. - Their verses are 
composed mostly in stanzas of eight or eleven 


syllables, a measure that appears the most agree- 
able to the human ear. They are blank, but 
occasionally a rhyme is introduced, according to 
the taste or caprice of the poet. 

The Araucanians have three kinds of phy- 
sicians, the -Ampives, the Vileus, and the Machis. 
The Ampives, a word equivalent to empirics, are 
the best. They employ in their cures only sim- 
ples, are skillful herbalists, and have some very 
good ideas of the pulse and the other diagnostics. 
The Vileus correspond to the methodists, or re- 
gular physicians. Their principal theory is, 
that all contagious disorders proceed from in- 
sects, an opinion held by many physicians in 
Europe. For this reason they generally give to 
epidemics the name of cutampiru, that is to say, 
Vermiculous disorders, or diseases of worms. 

The Machis are a superstitious class, that are 
to be met with among all the savage nations of 
both continents. They maintain that all serious 
disorders proceed from witchcraft, and pretend 
to cure them by supernatural means, for which 
reason they are employed in desperate cases, 
When the exertions of the Ampives or of the 
Vileus are ineffectual. Their mode of cure is 
denominated machitim, and consists in the fol- 
lowing idle ceremonies, which are always per- 
formed in the night : 

The room of the sick person is lighted with a 
great number of torches, and in a corner of it, 


among several branches of laurel, is placed a 
large bough of cinnamon, to which is suspended 
the magical drum ; near it is a sheep ready for 
sacrifice. The Machi directs the women who 
are present to sing with a loud voice a doleful 
song, accompanied with the sound of some little 
drums which thej beat at the same time. In 
the meantime, he fumigates three times with 
tobacco-smoke, the branch of cinnamon^ the 
sheep, the singers, and the sick person. After 
this ceremony, he kills the sheep, takes out the 
heart, and after sucking the blood fixes it upon 
the branch of cinnamon. He next approaches 
the patient, and by certain charms pretends to 
open his belly to discover the poison that has 
heen given him by the pretended sorcerer. He 
then takes the n^agical drum, which he beats, 
and sings, walking round with the women ; all 
at once he falls to the ground like a maniac, 
making frightful gesticulations and horrible con- 
tortions of his body, sometimes wildly opening 
his eyes, then shutting them, appearing like one 
possessed of an evil spirit. During this farcical 
scene, the relations of the sick interrogate the 
Machi upon the cause and seat of the malady. 
To these questions the fanatical impostor replies 
in such a manner as he believes best calculated 
to promote the deception, either by naming, as 
the cause of the malady, some person whom he 
wishes to revenge himself of, or by expressing 


himself doubtfully as to the success of his in- 


cantations. In this manner these diabolical 
mountebanks become very frequently the cause 
of horrible murders, as the relations of the sick,, 
supposing the accusation true, put to death 
without pity those accused of these practices, 
and sometimes involve in their revenge the whole 
family, if they are not strong enough to resist 
their violence. But these malicious fornenters 
of discord are careful never to accuse the prin- 
cipal families. The Machis, though not in- 
vested with the sacerdotal character, like the 
physicians of most other savage nations, greatly 
resemble in their impostures the Shamanis of 
Kamschatka, the Mokises of Africa, and the 
Piachis of the Oronoque, whose tricks are ac- 
curately described by the Abbe Gili, in his 
history of the Oronokians. 

These physicians, notwithstanding the different 
systems that they pursue, sometimes meet to sa- 
tisfy the solicitude or the vanity of the relations 
of the sick. But their consultations, which are 
called Thaiiman, have generally the same issue 
as those of the physicians of Europe. Tliey 
have, besides these two, other kinds of pro- 
fessors of medicine. The first, who may be 
styled surgeons, are skillful in replacing dislo- 
cations, in repairing fractures, and in curing 
wounds and ulcers. They are called Ou-ctrve, 
possess real merit, and often perform w^derful 


cures. But this is by no means the case with 
the others, called Cupove, from the verb cupon, 
to anatomize ; these, infatuated with Machii&m, 
dissect bodies, in order to show the entrails, 
which they say are infected with magic poison. 
Nevertheless, by means of this practice, they 
acquire ideas by no means contemptible respect- 
ing the conformation of the human body, for 
the different parts of which they have appro- 
priate names. 

Before the arrival of the Spaniards, the Arau- 
canians made use of bleeding, blistering, clysters, 
emetics, cathartics, and sudorifics, all which re- 
medies have their peculiar names in their lan- 
guage. They let blood with the sharp point of 
a flint fixed in a small stick. This instrument 
they prefer to a lancet, as they think it less liable 
to fail. Instead of a syringe they make use, 
like the inhabitants of Kamschatka, of a blad- 
der, to which they apply a pipe. Their emetics, 
cathartics, and sudorifics, are almost all ob- 
tained from the vegetable kingdom. 

Their internal and external commerce is very 
limited ; not having yet introduced among them 
the use of money, every thing is conducted by 
means of barter. This is regulated by a kind of 
conventional tariff, according to which all com- 
mercial articles are appraised under the name of 
Cullen, or payment, as was the custom in the 
time of Homer. Thus a horse or a bridle forms 


one payment ; an ox two, &c. Their external 
commerce is carried on with the Spaniards, with 
whom the j exchange ponchos and animals for 
wine, or the merchandize of Europe, and their 
good faith in contracts of this kind has always 
been highly applauded.* 

* The Spaniard who engages in this trade, applies directly 
to the heads of families. When he has obtained the necessary 
permission, he proceeds to all the houses, and distributes in- 
discriminately his merchandize to all those who present them- 
selves. When he has completed his sale, he gives notice of 
his departure, and all the purchasers hasten to deliver to him, 
in the first village that he arrives at, the articles agreed upon ; 
and never has there been an instance of the least failure of 
punctuality. — Baynal's History. 

The following is extracted from the Compendium of the 
Geographical, Natural, and Civil History of Chili, printed in 
Bologna, 1776". " The Spaniards who live in the province of 
Maule, and near the frontiers of Araucania, carry on a com- 
merce with those people, which consists in supplying them 
with iron ware, bits for bridles, cutlery, grain, and wine. This 
trade is conducted altogether by the way of barter, as it is not 
possible to persuade the Araucaniaus to open the gold mines, 
nor to produce any of that metal. The returns therefore are 
in ponchi, or Indian cloaks, of which they receive more than 
forty thousand annually, in horned cattle, horses, ostrich fea- 
thers, curiously wrought baskets, and other trifles of a similar 
kind. This commerce, although generally prohibited, is 
carried on in the Indian country, whither the traders go with 
their merchandize by bye-roads, and deposit it in the cabins 
of the natives, to whom they readily trust whatever they wish 
to sell, certain of being punctually paid at the time agreed 
upon, which is always the case, these Indians observing the 
greatest faith in their contracts. 



Pride of the Araucanians ; Kindness and Charity 
towards each other; Mode of Salutation; 
Proper Names. 

Although the Araucanians have lono- since 
emerged from a savage state, they nevertheless 
preserve, in many respects, the prejudices and the 
peculiar character of that early period. Proud 
of their valour and unbounded liberty, they 
believe themselves the only people in the world 
that deserve the name of men. From hence it 
is that, besides the appellation of auca, or free, 
which they value so highly, they give them- 
selves metonymically the names of die, or the 
nation ; of reclie, pure or undegenerated nation ; 
and of huentu, men ; a word of similar signifi- 
cation with the vir of the Latins, and as the 
latter is the root of the word virtus, so from the 
former is derived huentugen, which signifies the 
same thing:. 

From this ridiculous pride proceeds the con- 
tempt with which they regard all other nations. 
To the Spaniards they gave, on their first know- 
ledge of them, the nickname of chiapi, vile 
soldiers, from y\ hence proceeded the denomination 


of chiapeton, by which they are known in South 
America. The y afterwards called them huinca ; 
this injurious appellation, which from time and 
custom has lost its odiousness, comes from the 
verb liuincnn, which signifies to assassinate. It is 
true that in their first battles the Spaniards gave 
them too much reason for applying to them these 
opprobrious epithets, which serve to the present 
time to denote one of that nation. Esteeming 
themselves fortunate in their barbarity, they call 
those Indians who live in the Spanish settlements 
culme-huinca, or wretched Spaniards. To the 
other Europeans, the English, French, and 
Italians, whom they readily distinguish from 
each other, they give the name of maruche. 
which is equivalent to the term moro, used by 
the common people of Spain to denote all 
strangers indiscriminately. They call each other 
pegni, that is brothers, and even apply the same 
name to those born in their country of foreign 

The benevolence and kindness with which 
these people generally treat each other is really- 
surprising. For the word friend they have six 
or seven very expressive terms in their language, 
among others that of canay, which corresponds 
to the alter ego of the Latins. The relations 
that result from corresponding situations or 
common concerns in life are so many ties of re- 
gard, and are expressed by appropriate words 


denoting particular friendship or good will. 
Those who have the same name call each other 
laca 3 and those who bear but a part of the name. 
apellaca. These denominations incur an obliga- 
tion of mutual esteem and aid. Relations bv 
consanguinity are called in general monmague, 
and those of affinity, guillan. Their table of 
genealogy is more intricate than that of the 
Europeans, all the conceivable degrees of re- 
lationship being indicated therein by particular 

From the mutual affection that subsists be- 
tween them, proceeds their solicitude reciprocally 
to assist each other in their necessities. Not a 
beggar or an indigent person is to be found 
throughout the whole Araucanian territory; 
even the most infirm and incapable of subsisting 
themselves are decently clothed. 

This benevolence is not, however, confined 
only to their countrymen: they conduct with 
the greatest hospitality towards all strangers of 
whatever nation, and a traveller may live in any 
part of their country without the least expense. 

Their usual expression whenever they meet is 
marimari, and when they quit each other ven- 
temfi, or ventcni. They are rather tiresome in 
their compliments, which are generally too long, 
as they take a pride upon such occasions, as well 
as every other, in making a display of their elo- 
quence, The right hand is, among them, as with 


the Europeans, the most honourable station, con- 
trary to the practice of the Asiatics, with whom 
the left enjoys that privilege. They are na- 
turally fond of honourable distinction, and there 
is nothing* they can endure with less patience 
than contempt or inattention. From hence., if 
a Spaniard speaks to one of them with his hat 
on, he immediately says to him in an indignant 
tone, entugo tami curtcsia, take off your hat. 
By attention and courtesy, any thing may be 
obtained from them, and the favours which they 
receive make an indelible impression upon their 
minds, while on the contrary, ill treatment ex- 
asperates them to such a degree, that they pro- 
ceed to the greatest excesses to revenge them- 


The names of the Araucaniaus are composed 
of the proper name, which is generally either an 
adjective or a numeral, and the family appella- 
tion or surname, which is always placed after 
the proper name, according to the European 
custom, as cari-lcma, green bush ; meli-antu, 
four suns. The first denotes one of the family 
of the lemus, or bushes, and the second one of 
that of the antus 3 or suns. Nor is there scarcely 
a material object which does not furnish them 
with a discriminative name. From hence, we 
meet among them with the families of Rivers, 
Mountains, Stones, Lions, &c. These families, 



which are called cuga, or dpa, are more or less 
respected according to their rank, or the heroes 
they have given to their country. The origin 
of these surnames is unknown,, hut is certainly 
of a period much earlier than that of the Spanish 



Matrimony and Domestic Employments. 

By the admapu polygamy is allowed among the 
Araucanians, whence they marry as many wives 
as they can furnish with a dower, or more pro- 
perly purchase, as to obtain them they must give 
to their fathers a certain amount of property, as 
has been and still is the practice in most countries 
of both continents. But in their marriages they 
scrupulously avoid the more immediate degrees 
of relationship. Celibacy is considered as igno- 
minious. Old batchelors are called, by way of 
contempt, vuchiapra, and old maids cudepra, that 
is, old, idle, good for nothing. 

Their marriage ceremonies have little for- 
mality, or, to speak- more accurately, consist in 
nothing more than in carrying oif the bride by- 
pretended violence, which is considered by them, 
as by the negroes of Africa, an essential pre- 
requisite to the nuptials. The husband, in con- 
cert with the father, conceals himself with some 
friends near the place where they know the bride 
is to pass. As soon as she arrives she is seized 
and put on horseback behind the bridegroom, 
notwithstanding her pretended resistance and her 



which are called cuga, or rtpa, are more or less 
respected according to their rank, or the heroes 
they have given to their country. The origin 
of these surnames is unknown, hut is certainly 
of a period much earlier than that of the Spanish 



Matrimony and Domestic Employments. 

By the admapu polygamy is allowed among the 
Araucanians, whence they marry as many wives 
as they can famish with a dower, or more pro- 
perly purchase, as to obtain them they must give 
to their fathers a certain amount of property, as 
has been and still is the practice in most countries 
of both continents. But in their marriages they 
scrupulously avoid the more immediate degrees 
of relationship. Celibacy is considered as igno- 
minious. Old batchelors are called, by way of 
contempt, vuchiapra, and old maids cadepra, that 
is, old, idle, good for nothing. 

Their marriage ceremonies have little for- 
mality, or, to speak- more accurately, consist in 
nothing more than in carrying off the bride by- 
pretended violence, which is considered by them, 
as by the negroes of Africa, an essential pre- 
requisite to the nuptials. The husband, in con- 
cert with the father, conceals himself with some 
friends near the place where they know the bride 
is to pass. As soon as she arrives she is seized 
and put on horseback behind the bridegroom, 
notwithstanding her pretended resistance and her 


shrieks., which are far from being serious. In 
this maimer she is conducted with much noise to 
the house of her husband,, where her relations 
are assembled, and receive the presents agreed 
upon, after having- partaken of the nuptial enter- 
tainment. Of course, the expenses of an Arau- 
canian wedding are by no means inconsiderable, 
from whence it happens that the rich alone can 
maintain any considerable number of wives. 
The poor content themselves with one or two at 
most. Nor does there arise any inconvenience 
from the scarcity of women, as the number of 
females is much greater than the males, which 
is always the case in those countries where po- 
lygamy is permitted. 

The first wife, who is called unendomo, is 
always respected as the real and legitimate one 
by all the others, who are called inandomo, or 
secondary wives. She has the management of 
the domestic concerns, and regulates the interior 
of the house. The husband has much to do to 
maintain harmony among so many women, who 
are not a little inclined to jealousy, and each 
night at supper makes known his choice of her 
who is to have the honour of sharing his bed, 
by directing her to prepare it. The others sleep 
in the same room, and no one is permitted to 
approach them. Strangers, on their arrival, are 
lodged in a cabin entirely separate from this 


The wives have the greatest respect for their 
husbands, and generally give him the title of 
hula, or great. Besides female occupations,, 
they are obliged to employ themselves in many 
that, in civilized countries, are considered as the 
peculiar province of the men, according to 
the established maxim of all barbarous nations, 
that the weaker sex are born to labour, and the 
stronger to make war and to command. Each 
of them is obliged to present to her husband 
daily a dish prepared by herself in her separate 
kitchen or fire-place ; for this reason the houses 
of the Araucanians have as many fires as there 
are women inhabiting them ; whence, in inquir- 
ing of any one how many wives he has, they 
make use of the following phrase of being the 
most polite, muri ontlialgeimi, how many fires 
do you keep. Each wife is also obliged to 
furnish her husband yearly, besides his necessary 
clothing, with one of those cloaks already de- 
scribed, called ponchos, which form one of the 
principal branches of the Araucanian commerce. 

The greatest attention is paid by the women 
to the cleanliness of their houses, which they 
sweep, as well as their courts, several times in 
the course of a day ; and whenever they make 
use of any utensil they immediately wash it, for 
which purpose their houses are supplied with an 
abundance of running water. The same at- 
tention to cleanliness is paid to their persons ; 

i 3 


they comb their heads twice a day, and once a 
week wash them with a soap made from the bark 
of the quillai* which keeps the hair very clean. 
There is never to be seen on their clothes the 
least spot or dirt. The men are likewise equally 
as fond of cleanliness ; they never fail to comb 
their heads every day, and are also accustomed 
frequently to wash them. 


ing, as anions: the ancients, is in common 

use with these people, who think it necessary to 
preserve their health and strengthen their bodies, 
and in order to have it convenient they are careful 
to place their houses on the banks of rivers. In 
warm weather they bathe themselves several 
times a day, and it is rare even in winter that 
they do not bathe themselves at least once a day ; 
by means of this continued exercise they become 
excellent swimmers, and give wonderful proofs 
of dexterity in this art. They will swim for a 
great distance under water, and in this manner 
cross their largest rivers, which renders them 
some of the best divers in the world. 

The women are also fond of frequent bathing, 
and for this purpose, select the most obscure 
solitary places, at a great distance from the men. 
Even on the very day of the birth of a child, 
they take the infant to the river and wash it, and 

* Quillaia Saponaiia ; it is also much used by the Spaniards, 
specially those who live in the country, 


also themselves, and within a short time return 
to their customary occupations,, without expe- 
riencing any inconvenience ; so true it is, that 
the human constitution is not naturally delicate, 
but is rendered so by our customs and modes of 
living. Child-birth is with them attended with 
little pain, which must be attributed to the 
strength of their constitutions ; for a similar 
reason the women of the lower classes in Europe, 
according to the statement of Doctor Bland, in 
the Philosophical Transactions, experience a 
more easy delivery than the ladies, and are less 
subject to sickness in consequence. 

Whether directed merely by the impulse of 
simple nature, or actuated by their solicitude to 
furnish strong men to the state, they rear their 
children in a very different manner from what is 
practised in civilized countries. When they 
have washed them in running water, as I have 
already observed, they neither swathe nor bandage 
them, but place them in a hanging cradle, called 
chiguh, lined with soft skins, where they merely 
cover them with a cloth, and swing them from 
time to time by means of a cord attached to the 
cradle, which leaves them more at liberty to 
attend to their domestic concerns. 

When their children begin to walk, which is 

very soon, they neither put them into stays nor 

any other confined dress, but keep them loosely 

clad, and let them go any where and eat what 



they please. Formed thus, as it were, by them- 
selves, they become well shaped and robust, and 
less subject to those infirmities that are the con- 
sequence of a tender and a delicate education. 
Indeed, the maladies that prevail among the 
Araucanians are bat few, and are for the most 
part reducible to inflammatory fevers, originating 
either from intemperance in drinking, or to the 
excessive exercise which they sometimes use. 

If the physical education of the Araucanian 
children is in a certain degree laudable, the 
moral education which they receive will not cer- 
tainly meet with our entire approbation. It is, 
nevertheless, conformable to the ideas of that 
high-minded people, respecting the innate liberty 
of man, and such as may be expected from an 
uncivilized nation. " Their fathers are satisfied 
with instructing them in the use of arms, and 
the management of horses, and in learning them 
to speak their native language with elegance. 
In other respects they leave them at liberty to do" 
whatever they please, and praise them whenever 
they see them insolent, saying that in this manner 
they learn to become men. It is very unusual 
for them to chastise or correct them, as "they hold 
it as an established truth, that chastisement ren- 
ders men base and cowardlv. 



Food ; Music and other Diversions. 

The usual diet of the Araucanians is very sim- 
ple ; their principal subsistence is several kinds 
of grain and pulse, which they prepare in a 
variety of different modes. They are particu- 
larly fond of maize or Indian corn, and potatoes; 
of the last they have cultivated more than thirty 
different kinds from time immemorial, esteemin 
them a very healthy nutriment, which the ex- 
perience of ages has sufficiently demonstrated. 
Although they have large and small animals and 
birds in plenty, yet they eat but little flesh, and 
that is simply boiled or roasted. They have the 
same abstemiousness in the use of pork, from 
which they know very well how to prepare 
black puddings and sausages. Their seas and 
rivers abound with excellent fish, but they do 
riot much esteem this kind of aliment. Instead 
of bread, which they are not accustomed to eat 
except at their entertainments, they make use of 
small cakes or roasted potatoes with a little salt. 
Their usual drinks consist of various kinds of 
beer and of cider, made from Indian corn, from 
apples and other fruits of the country. They 

are nevertheless extremely fond of wine, which 
they purchase from the Spaniards, but hitherto, 
either for political reasons, or more probably 
from carelessness, they have paid no attention 
to the raising of vines, which, as has been 
proved by experiment, produce very well in all 
their provinces. 

The master of the house eats at the same table 
with the rest of his family. The plates are 
earthen, and the spoons and cups are made of 
horn or wood. The Ulmenes have in general 
wrought plate for the service of their tables, 
but they only make use of it when they entertain 
some stranger of rank; upon such occasions 
they ostentatiously display it, being naturally 
fond of show, and of being considered rich. 
Their seasonings are made of Guinea pepper, of 
madi, and salt. In summer they are fond of 
dining in the shade of trees, which for this pur- 
pose are always planted around their houses. 
They do not use the flint for the purpose of ob- 
taining fire, but employ, like the Kamtschat- 
dales, two pieces of dry wood, one of which 
they place upon another, and turn it m their 
hands until it takes fire, which is very soon. 
Besides dinner, suppor, and breakfast, they have 
every day without fail their luncheon, which 
consists of a little flour of parched corn, steeped 
in hot water in the morning, and in cold in the 


But they often deviate from this simple mode 
of living at the public entertainments, which 
they give each other on occasion of funerals, 
marriages,, or any other important event. At 
such times no expense is spared, and they are 
profuse of every thing that can promote festivity, 
In one of these banquets, at which it is common 
for three hundred persons to be present, more 
meat, grain, and liquor, is consumed, than would 
be sufficient to support a whole family for two 
years. It is usual for one of these feasts to con- 
tinue two or three clays ; they are called cahuin, 
or circles, from the company seating themselves 
in a circle around a large branch of cinnamon. 

Such entertainments are made gratuitously, 
and any person whatever is permitted to partici- 
pate in them without the least expense or requi- 
sition. But this is not the case with the min- 
gacos, or those dinners which they are accus- 
tomed to make on occasion of cultivating their 
lantl, threshing their grain, building a house, or 
any other work which requires the combined aid 
of several. At such times all those who wish 
to partake in the feast must labour until the 
work is completed. But as these people have 
abundant leisure, the labourers convene in such 
numbers, that in a very few hours the work is 
finished, and the rest of the day is devoted to 
feasting and drinking. The Spaniards who live 
in the country have also adopted a similar plan. 


availing themselves of the same kind of industry 
to complete their rural labours. 

Fermented liquors, in the opinion of the Arau- 
canians, form the principal requisites of an en- 
tertainment; for whenever they are not in plenty; 
whatever may be the quantity of provisions, 
they manifest great dissatisfaction, exclaiming 
golingelai, it is a wretched feast, there is no 
drink. These bacchanalian revels succeed each 
other almost without interruption throughout 
the year, as every man of property is ambitious 
of the honour of giving them, so that it may be 
said that the Araucanians, when not engaged in 
war, pass the greater part of their lives in re- 
velry and amusement. Music, dancing, and 
play, form their customary diversions. As to 
the first, it scarcely deserves the name, net so 
much from the imperfection of the instruments, 
which are the same they make use of in war, but 
from their manner of singing, which has some- 
thing in it harsh and disagreeable to the ear, 
until one has been accustomed to it foe a lonjr 
time. They have several kinds of dances, 
which are lively and pleasing, and possess con- 
siderable variety. The women aie rarely per- 
mitted to dance with the men, but form their 
companies apart, and dance to the sound of the 
same instruments. 

If what the celebrated Leibnitz asserts is true, 
that men have never discovered greater talents 


than in the invention of the different kinds of 
games, the Araucanians may justly claim the 
merit of not being in this respect inferior to 
other nations. Their games are very numerous, 
and for the most part very ingenious ; they are 
divided into the sedentary and gymnastic. It is 
a curious fact, and worthy of notice, that among 
the first is the game of chess, which they call 
comican, and which has been known to them 
from time immemorial. The game of quechu, 
which they esteem highly, has a great affinity to 
that of backgammon, but instead of dice they 
make use of triangular pieces of bone marked 
with points, which they throw with a little hoop 
or circle supported by two pegs, as was, pro- 
bably, the fritillus of the ancient Romans. 

The youth exercise themselves frequently m 
wrestling and running. They are also much 
attached to playing with the ball ; it is called 
by them pilma, and is made from a species of 
rush. But of all their gymnastic games that 
require strength, the petico and the palican are 
the best suited to their genius, as they serve as 
an image of war. The first, which represents 
the siege of a fortress, is conducted in the fol- 
lowing manner : Twelve or more persons join 
hands and form a circle, in the centre of which 
stands a little boy ; their adversaries, who are 
equal in number, and sometimes superior, en- 
deavour by force or .stratagem to break the 


circle, and make themselves masters of the child, 
n which the victory consists. But this attempt 
is by no means so easy as it may seem. The 
defenders make almost incredible efforts to keep 
themselves closely united, whence the besiegers 
are often compelled, by this obstinate defence, to 
relinquish the attempt through weariness. 

The palican, which the Spaniards call chueca, 
resembles the orpasto or spheromachia of the 
Greeks, and the calcio of the Florentines. This 
game has every appearance of a regular battle, 
and is played with a wooden ball, called pall, on 
a plain of about half a mile in length, the boun- 
daries of which are marked with branches of 
trees. The players, to the number of thirty, 
furnished with sticks curved at the end, arrange 
themselves in two files, disposed in such a manner 
that each of them stands opposite to his adver- 
sary ; when the judges appointed to preside at 
the game give the signal, the two adversaries 
who occupy the eighth station advance, and 
with their sticks remove the ball from a hole in 
the earth, when each endeavours to strike it to- 
wards his party ; the others impel it forward or 
backward, according to the favourable or un- 
favourable course it is pursuing, that party ob- 
taining the victory to whose limits it is driven. 
From hence proceeds a severe contest between 
them, so that it sometimes happens that a single 
match requires more than half a day to finish 


it. This game has its established laws,, which 
the judges oblige them very strictly to observe ; 
notwithstanding which, many disputes occur. 
The successful players acquire great reputation, 
and are invited to all the principal parties that 
are made in the country. When two provinces 
challenge each other, as frequently happens, 
this amusement becomes a public spectacle. An 
immense crowd of people collect, and bet very 
largely. The peasants of the Spanish provinces 
have introduced among this game, and their 
families, in reference to it, are divided into two 
parties called plazas and lampas. It has become 
one of their most favourite amusements, notwith- 
standing the proclamations issued from time to 
time by the government against all those who en- 
courage or promote it. 

What we have said of the Araucanians does 
not altogether apply to the Puelches, or inhabit 
ants of the fourth Uthalmapu, situated in the 
Andes. These, although they conform to the 
general customs of the nation, always discover 
a greater degree of rudeness and savageness of 
manners. Their name signifies eastern-men. 
They are of lofty stature, and are fond of hunt- 
ing, which induces them frequently to change 
their habitations, and extend their settlements 
j^ot only to the eastern skirts of the Andes, but 
«ven to the borders of the lake Nagzielguapi, 


and to the extensive plains of Patagonia on the 
shores of the North Sea. The Araucanians hold 
these mountaineers in high estimation for the im- 
portant services which they occasionally render 
them., and for the fidelity which they have ever 
observed in their alliance with them. 







The Araucanians attack the Spaniards under the 
conduct of Aillavalu, and afterwards that of 
Lincoyan; Valdivia makes incursions into their 
territory, and founds therein the cities of Im- 
perial, Villarica, Valdivia, and Angol, with 
several other places, 

r lHE Araucanians having resolved, as was 
mentioned. in the first hook, to send succours to 
the inhabitants of Penco, who were invaded by 
the Spaniards, gave orders to the To qui Aillavalu 
to march immediately to their assistance at the 
head of 4000 men. In the year 1550, that 
general passed the great river Bio-bio, which 
separates the Araucanian territory from that of 
the Pencones, and boldly offered battle to these 

VOL. II. k. 


new enemies, who had advanced to meet him to 
the shores of the Andalien. 

After the first discharge of musketry, which 
the Araucanians sustained without being terrified 
or disconcerted, thus early manifesting how little 
they would regard it when rendered familiar by 
habit, Aillavalu, with a rapid movement, fell at 
once upon the front and flanks of the Spanish 
army. They on their part forming themselves 
into a square, supported by their cavalry, re- 
ceived the furious attacks of the enemy with 
their accustomed valour, killing a great number 
of, them, but losing at the same time many of 
their own men. The battle remained undecided 
for several hours. The Spaniards were thrown 
into some disorder, and their general was ex- 
posed to imminent danger, having had his horse 
killed under him, when Aillavalu, hurried for- 
wards by a rash courage, received a mortal 
wound. The Araucanians, having lost their 
general, with many of their most valiant officers, 
then retired, but "in good order, leaving the field 
to the Spaniards, who had no disposition to 
pursue them. 

Valdivia, who had been in many battles in 
Europe as well as America, declared that he had 
never been exposed to such imminent hazard of 
his life, as in this engagement ; and, much as- 
tonished at the valour and military skill of these 
people, he immediately set about constructing a 


strong fortification near the city,, expecting 
shortly to be attacked again. In fact, no sooner 
were the Araucanians informed of the death of 
their general, than they sent against him ano- 
ther army still more numerous, under the com- 
mand of Lincoyan. This officer, from his gi- 
gantic stature, and a certain show of courage, 
had acquired high reputation among his com- 
panions in arms, but he was naturally timid and 
irresolute, and was much better suited for a su- 
baltern station than for that of commander in 

The new Toqui, in the year 1551, formed his 
troops into three divisions, and marched to attack 
the Spaniards. Such was the terror inspired by 
the approach of the Araucanians, that the Spa- 
niards, after confessing themselves, and partaking 
of the sacrament, took shelter under the cannon 
of their fortifications. But Lincoyan finding 
the first attack unsuccessful, apprehensive of 
losing the army committed to his charge, ordered 
a precipitate retreat, to the great surprise of 
Valdivia, who, apprehensive of some stratagem, 
forbad his soldiers to pursue the fugitives. 
When it was discovered that the enemy had re- 
treated in good earnest, they began to consider 
their flight as a special mark of the favour of 
heaven, and, in the fervour of their enthusiasm, 
there were not wanting some who declared that 
they had seen the Apostle St. James upon a white 


horse, with a flaming sword, striking terror into 
their enemies.* These declarations were readily 
believed, and the whole army, in consequence, 
unanimously agreed to build a chapel upon the 
field of battle, which a few years after was dedi- 
cated to that apostle. But this miracle, which 
is not entitled to greater credit from its having 
been so frequently repeated, proceeded alone from 
the circumspection and timidity of Lincoyan. 

The Spanish general, who was now in some 
measure freed from the restraint imposed upon 

* This Apostle appears to have been a very convenient per- 
sonage, and very ready with his aid upon all such occasions to 
the Spaniards of that period. Bernal Diaz, in his true history 
of the conquest of Mexico, in giving an account of a similar 
story, thus expresses himself with his peculiar naivete. " In 
Iris account of this action Gomara says, that previous to the 
arrival of the main body of the cavalry under Cortes, Fran- 
cisco de Morla appeared in the field upon a grey dappled 
horse, and that it was one of the holy apostles, St. Peter or 
St. Jago, disguised under his person. I say, that all our 
works and victories are guided by the hand of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, and that in this battle there were so many enemies to 
every one of us, that they could have buried us under the dust 
they could have held in their hands, but that the great mercy 
of God aided us throughout. What Gomara asserts might be 
the case, and I, sinner as lam, was not worthy to be permitted 
to see it. What I did see was Francisco de Morla riding in 
company with Cortes and the rest upon a chesnut horse, and 
that circumstance, and all the others of that day, appear to me, 
at this moment that I am writing, as if actually passing in the 
view of these sinful eyes.' 4 



him by the Araucanians, applied himself with 
great diligence to building the new city. Al- 
though he had fixed upon St. Jago for the capital 
of the colony, he nevertheless discovered a strong 
predilection for this maritime settlement, con- 
sidering it as the future centre of the communi- 
cation with Peru and Spain. Here he likewise 
intended to establish his family, selecting for his 
habitation a pleasant situation, and in the division 
of lands reserving for himself the fertile penin- 
sula lying between the mouths of the rivers Bio- 
bio and Andalien, and, as he fully expected in a 
short time to be able to subjugate the Arauca- 
nians, he had also resolved to ask of the court 
of Spain, in reward for his services, the two ad- 
jacent provinces of Arauco and Tucapel, with 
the title of Marquis. 

The building of the city having progressed 
rapidly under his inspection in a short time, he 
employed the remainder of the year in regulating- 
its internal police. For this purpose he pub- 
lished forty-two articles or statutes, among which 
are some that discover much prudence and hu- 
manity respecting the treatment of the natives, 
whom he left, however, as elsewhere, subject to 
the private control of the citizens. Believing 
that the courage of the Araucanians was now 
completely subdued, as, since (heir second un- 
successful expedition, they had made no attempt 
to molest him, he resolved to attack them in their 


own territory, with a reinforcement that he had 
just received from Peru. 

With this intention, in the year 1552, he passed 
the Bio-bio, and proceeding rapidly through the 
provinces of Encol and Puren, unobstructed by 
the tardy operations of Lincoyan came to the 
shores of the Cauten, which divides the Arau- 
canian territory into two nearly equal parts. At 
the confluence of this river a d that of Damas, 
he founded another city, to which he gave the 
name of Imperial, in honour of the Emperor 
Charles the Fifth ; or, as is said by some, in 
consequence of rinding there eagles with two 
heads cut in wood, placed upon the tops of the 
houses. This city was situated in a beautiful 
spot, abounding with every convenience of life, 
and during the short period of its existence be- 
came the most flourishing of any in Chili. Its 
position on the shore of a large river of sufficient 
depth for vessels to lie close to the walls, ren- 
dered it a highly advantageous situation for 
commerce, and would enable it to obtain imme- 
diate succour in case of siege. Modern geo- 
graphers speak of it as a city not only existing 
at the present time, but as very strongly for- 
tified, and the seat of a bishopric, when it has 
been buried in ruins for more than two hundred 

Valdivia, intoxicated with this unexpected 
prosperity, displayed all that liberality which 


frequently marks the conduct of those who find 
themselves in a situation to give away what costs 
them nothing. Exulting with his officers in the 
supposed reduction of the most valiant nation of 
Chili, he assigned to them, conditionally, the ex- 
tensive districts of the surrounding country. 
To Francis Villagran, his Lieutenant-General, 
he gave the warlike province of Maquegua, 
called by the Araucanians the key of their coun- 
try, with thirty thousand inhabitants.* The 
other officers obtained from eight to twelve 
thousand natives, f with lands in proportion, ac- 
cording to the degree of favour in which they 
stood with the general. He also dispatched Al- 
derete, with sixty men, to form a settlement on 

* After the death of Villagran, the province of Maquegua was 
partitioned anew among the conquerors, the principal part of it 
being assigned to Juan de Ocampo, and the other to Andreas 
Matencio ; but, in consequence of its recapture by the Indians, 
they reaped very little if any advantage from these connnand- 
eries. Ocampo afterwards obtained, as a reward for his dis- 
tinguished services, the Coiregidorate of the city of Serena, 
and that of Mendoza and St. Juan, in the province of Cujo ; 
in this last province was likewise granted him a commandery 
of Indians, which he afterwards ceded to the crown. He was 
from Salamanca, of a very illustrious family, a relation to the 
first bishop of Imperial, and one of the bravest officers that 
went from Peru to Chili. 

t Among those most in favour with Valdivia, was Pedro 
' Aguilera, who received the gift of a commandery, containing 
from ten to twelve thousand Indians. 
K 4 


the shore of the great lake Lauquen, to which he 
gave the name of Villarica, from the great 
quantity of gold that he found in its environs. 

In the meantime, having received fresh rein- 
forcements, he commenced his march towards the 
south, still kept in view by Lincoyan, who sought 
a favourable opportunity of attacking him, which 
his timid caution constantly prevented him from 
finding. In this manner the Spanish commander 
traversed with little loss the whole of Araucania 
from north to south, but on his arrival at the 
river Caliacalla, which separates the Araucanians 
from the Cunches, he found the latter in arms 
determined to oppose his passage. While he 
was deliberating what measures to pursue, a 
woman of the country, called Becloma, either 
from interested motives or a real desire to pre, 
vent the effusion of blood, came to him and pro- 
mised to persuade her countrymen to withdraw. 
In consequence, having passed the river, she ad- 
dressed the Cunchese general with such elo- 
quence in favour of the strangers, that, without 
ioreseeing the consequences, he permitted them 
to pass unmolested. The Cunches are one of the 
most valiant nations of Chili. They inhabit that 
tract of country which lies upon the sea be- 
tween the river Calacalla, at present called Val- 
divia, and the Archipelago of Chiloe. They are 
the allies of the Araucanians, and mortal enemies 
to the Spaniards, and are divided into several 


tribes^ which, like those in the other parts of 
Chili, are governed hy their respective Ulmenes* 

The Spanish commander, having passed the 
liver with his troops, founded upon the southern 
shore the sixth city, which he called Val- 
divia, being the first of the American con- 
querors who sought in this manner to perpetuate 
his family name. This settlement, of which at 
present only the fortress remains, in a few years 
attained a considerable degree of prosperity, not 
only from the superior fineness of the gold dug 
in its mines, which has obtained it the privilege 
of a mint, but from the excellence of its harbour, 
one of the most secure and pleasant in the South 
Sea. The river is very broad, and so deep that 
ships of the line may anchor within a few feet of 
the shore ; it also forms several other harbours 
in the vicinity. 

Vaklivia, satisfied with the conquests or rather 
incursions that he had made, turned back, and in 
repassing the provinces of Puren, Tucapel, and 
Arauco, built in each of them, in 1 553, a fortress, 
to secure the possession of the others, as he well 
knew that from these provinces alone he had to 
apprehend any attempt that might prove fatal to 
his settlements. Ercilla says that, in this expe- 
dition, the Spaniards had to sustain many battles 
with the natives, which is highly probable, as 
the continuance of Lincoyan in the command 
can upon no other principle be accounted for. 



But these actions, ill-conducted through the 
cowardly caution of the general, were very far 
from checking the torrent that inundated the 

Without reflecting upon the imprudence of 
occupying so large an extent of country with so 
small a force, Valdivia had the farther rashness 
on his return to Santiago to dispatch Francis de 
Aguirre, with two hundred men, to conquer the 
provinces of Cujo and Tucuman, situated to the 
east of the Andes. It is true that about this 
time he received by sea from Peru a considerable 
body of recruits, and 350 unmounted horses, 
but this reinforcement was little, compared to 
the vast number of people necessary to retain in 

Nevertheless, indefatigable in the execution of 
his extensive plans, which bore a flattering ap- 
pearance of success, the Spanish general returned 
to Araucania, and in the province of Encol 
founded the seventh and last city, in a country 
fertile in vines, and gave it the name of the City 
of the Frontiers. This name, from events which 
could not possibly have been in the calculation 
of Valdiviai has become strictly applicable to its 
present state, as its ruins are in reality situated 
upon the confines of the Spanish settlement in 
that part of Chili. It was a rich and com- 
mercial city, and its wines were transported to 
Buenos Ayres by a road over the Cordilleras. 


The Encyclopedia contains a description of this 
place under the name of Angol, which it was 
afterwards called by the Spaniards, and speaks 
of it as at present existing. 

After having made suitable provisions for this 
colony, Valdivia returned to his favourite city of 
Conception, where he instituted the three prin- 
cipal military offices, that of quarter- master- 
general, of serjeant-major, and of commissary, a 
regulation that has ever since prevailed in the 
royal army of Chili.* He then sent Alderete to 
Spain with a particular account of his conquests,, 
and a large sum of money, and commissioned 
him to use his utmost exertions to obtain for him 
the perpetual government of the conquered coun- 
trv, with the title of Marquis of Arauco. At 
the same time he dispatched Francis Ulloa with 
a ship to examine the Straits of Magellan, by 
which he hoped to open a direct communication 
with Europe, without depending upon Peru. 

* But two of these offices at present exist ; that of the 
quarter-master-general, who is also called the Intendant, and 
resides in the city of Conception; and that of the serjeant- 
major — the latter has been since divided into two, one for the 
cavalry, the other for the infantry. That of commissary is 
only known in the city militia. 



Caupolicaii appointed To qui ; He attacks the- 
Forts of Arauco and of Tucapel; The Spanish 
Army entirely defeated, and Valdivia slain. 

Whilst Valdivia was engrossed in the contem- 
plation of his extensive plans, without suspecting 
the cruel reverse that fortune was preparing for 
him, an old Ulnien of the province of Arauco, 
called Colocolo, animated with the love of his 
country, quitted the retirement to which he had 
long before betaken himself, and with indefati- 
gable zeal traversed the Araucanian provinces, 
exciting anew the courage of his countrymen, 
rendered torpid by their disasters, and soliciting 
them to make choice of a general capable of dis- 
lodging the Spaniards from the posts they had 
occupied in consequence of the improper con- 
duct of Lincoyan. This chief had acquired 
throughout the country the reputation of wis- 
dom, and was well versed in the knowledge of 
government ; his great age and experience had 
procured him the esteem of the whole nation, 
and they had always recourse to him on occa- 
sions of the greatest importance. 

The Ulmenes, who were alreadv of the same 


opinion, immediately assembled, according to 
their custom, in a meadow, and, after the usual 
feast, began to consult upon the election. Many 
aspired to the glory of being the avengers of 
their oppressed country, among whom Andali- 
can, Elicura, Ongolmo, Renco, and Tucapel, 
were particularly distinguished. The latter, who 
by his martial prowess had given his name to 
the province of which he was Apo-XJlmen, pos- 
sessed a powerful party, but the more prudent 
electors were opposed to his appointment, as he 
was of an impetuous character, and they dreaded 
his hastening the ruin of the state. Dissentions 
ran so high, that the opposite parties were 
on the point of having recourse to arms, when 
the venerable Colocolo arose, and, by a well- 
timed and energetic address, so far pacified their 
irritated minds, that all, with one accord, sub- 
mitted to his choice the appointment of a com- 
mander. The wise old man, on whom every 
eye was fixed, named, without hesitation, Cau- 
polican, the Ulmen of Pilmayquen, a district of 
Tucapel, who, with that modesty that marks a 
great character, had not offered himself as one of 
the candidates. 

All the nation applauded the choice of Colo- 
colo, as the person appointed was a serious, 
patient, sagacious, and valiant man, possessing, 
in short, all the qualities of a great general. 
His lofty stature, uncommon bodily strength, and 


the majesty of his countenance, although de- 
ficient in an eye, gave an additional lustre to the 
inestimable endowments of his mind. Having 
assumed the axe, the badge of his authority, he 
immediately appointed the officers who were to 
command under him, among whom were all his 
competitors, and even Lincoyan himself; but the 
office of Vice Toqui he reserved for Mariantu, 
in whom he had the utmost confidence. The 
violent Tucapel, who aspired to the chief com- 
mand, did not disdain to serve under his vassal, 
manifesting by this, that the sole motive of his 
ambition was his wish to serve his country. 

The Araucanians, who considered themselves 
invincible under their new Toqui, were desirous 
of going immediately from the place of meeting 
to attack the Spaniards ; but Caupolican, who 
was no less politic than valiant, repressed this 
ardour with prudent arguments, advising them 
to provide themselves with good arms, in order 
to be in readiness at the first orders. He then 
reviewed his army, and resolved to commence 
his operations by a stratagem, which on the day 
of his expedition was suggested to him by acci- 
dent: Having that morning taken a party of 
eighty Indians, auxiliaries of the Spaniards, who 
were conducting forage to the neighbouring post 
of Arauco, he substituted in their place an equal 
number of his bravest soldiers, under the com- 
mand of Cajuguenu and Alcatipay, whom he di- 




rected to keep their arms concealed among the 
bundles of grass, and to maintain possession of 
the gate of the fortress until he could come to 
their assistance with his army. 

The pretended foragers performed their parts 
so well, that without the least suspicion they 
were admitted into the fortress. Immediately 
they seized their arms, attacked the guard, and 
began to kill all that came in their way. The 
remainder of the garrison, under the command of 
Francis Reynoso, hastened, well armed, to the 
scene of tumult, opposed them vigorously, and 
after an obstinate contest, drove them from the 
gate at the very moment of the arrival of the 
Araucanian army ; so that they had but just 
time to raise the draw-bridge and hasten to the 
defence of the walls. Although Caupolican was 
disappointed in his expectations, he hoped, how- 
ever, to derive some advantage from the con- 
fusion of the enemy, and, encouraging his soldiers, 
assailed the fortress upon every side, notwith- 
standing the continual fire of the besieged from 
two cannon and six field pieces. But perceiving 
that he lost a great number of men, he resolved 
to turn the assault into a blockade, expecting to 
reduce the place by famine. 

After various unsuccessful sallies, in which they 
lost many of their companions, the Spaniards re- 
solved to abandon the fort, and retire to that of 
Puren, This measure had indeed become neces- 


sarv, as their provisions began to fail, and they 
had no hope of being relieved. In pursuance of 
this plan, at midnight they mounted their horses, 
and suddenly opening the gate, rushed out at full 
speed, and escaped through the midst of their 
enemies; the Araucanians, who supposed it to 
be one of their customary sallies, taking no mea~ 
sures to obstruct their flight. 

Caupolican having destroyed this fortress, led 
his troops to attack that of Tucapel. This post 
was garrisoned by forty men, under the command 
of Martin Erizar. That distinguished officer 
defended himself valiantly for several days, but 
much weakened by the continual assaults of the 
enemies, and provisions failing him, he deter- 
mined to withdraw to the same fort of Puren, 
whither the garrison of Arauco had retreated, 
which he executed, either in consequence of a 
capitulation with Caupolican, or by an artifice 
similar to that which had succeeded so fortu- 
nately with the commander of Arauco. 

The Araucanian general having destroyed 
these fortresses, which caused him the greatest 
anxiety, encamped with his army on the ruins of 
that of Tucapel, to wait the approach of the 
Spaniards, who, as he supposed, would not be 
long in coming against him. No sooner had 
Valdivia, who was then in Conception, learned 
the siege of Arauco, when he began his march 
for that place, with all the forces that he could 



collect in so short a time, in opposition to the 
advice of his most experienced officers, who ap- 
pear to have had a presentiment of what was to 

The Spanish historians of that period, as they 
felt a greater or less desire of diminishing the 
loss of their countrymen, vary greatly in their 
accounts of the number of Spanish and Indian 
auxiliaries, who accompanied him in this unfor- 
tunate expedition. According to some, he had 
only two hundred of the first, and five thousand 
of the latter. Others reduce even this to only 
half the number. The same uncertainty is to be 
found in their accounts of the number of the ene- 
my, some making it amount to nine, and others to 
more than tenthousand. If both thehostile parties 
possessed historical documents, we might, from 
comparing their different accounts, probably ob- 
tain a tolerable accurate calculation, but the 
means of information we are obliged to have re- 
course to, are all derived from the same source. 
Nevertheless, on considering the important con- 
sequences of this battle, we are induced to be- 
lieve that the loss was much greater than is pre- 

On approaching within a short distance of the 
enemy's encampment, Valdivia sent Diego del 
Oro forward to reconnoitre them with ten horse. 
This detachment falling in with an advanced 
party of the Araucanians, were all slain bythen*; 

vol. II. t 


and their heads cut off and suspended to trees 
upon the road. The Spanish soldiers, on ar- 
riving at this spot, were filled with horror at the 
sight of such an unexpected spectacle, and not- 
withstanding their accustomed intrepidity, were 
solicitous to return. Valdivia himself began to 
regret his having disregarded the advice of his 
older officers, but piqued by the haughty boasts 
of the young, who, notwithstanding the mournful 
evidence before them, declared that ten of them 
were sufficient to put to flight the Araucanian 
army, he continued his march, and on the 3d of 
December, 1553, came in sight of the enemy's 
camp. The ruins of Tucapel, the well-regulated 
array of the hostile army, the insulting scoffs of 
their enemies, who in a loud voice called them 
robbers and impostors, filled the minds of the 
soldiers, accustomed to command and to be 
treated with respect, with mingled sentiments of 
indignation and terror. 

The two armies continued a long time ob- 
serving each other; at length Mariantu, who 
commanded the right wing of the Araucanians, 
commenced the combat by moving against the 
left of the Spaniards under the command of Bo- 
vadilla, who marched to attack fokn with a de- 
tachment, which was immediately surrounded, 
and all of them cut in pieces. The serjeant- 
major, who was dispatched by Valdivia to his 
assistance with another detachment, experienced 



a similar fate. Meanwhile Tucapel, who com- 
manded the left wins: of the Araucanians, beo;an 
the attack upon his side with his usual impetu- 
osity. The action now became general ; the 
Spaniards, furnished with superior arms, and 
animated by the example of their valiant leader, 
who performed the duty of a soldier as well as 
that of a general, overthrew and destroyed whole 
ranks of their enemies. But the Araucanians, 
notwithstanding the slaughter made among them 
by the cannon and musketry, continued con- 
stantly to supply with fresh troops the places of 
those that were slain. Three times they retired 
in good order beyond the reach of the musketry, 
and as often, resuming new vigour, returned to 
the attack. At length, after the loss of a great 
number of their men, they were thrown into dis- 
order and began to give way. Caupolican, Tu- 
capel, and the intrepid Colocolo, who was pre- 
sent in the action, in vain attempted to prevent 
their flight and reanimate their courage. The 
Spaniards shouted vietor} T , and furiously pressed 
upon the fugitives. 

At this momentous crisis, a young Araucanian 
of but sixteen years of age, called Lautaro, 
whom Valdivia in one of his incursions had 
taken prisoner, baptized, and made . his page, 
quitted the victorious party, began loudly to 
reproach his countrymen with their cowardice^, 
and exhorted them to continue the contest, as ih® 


Spaniards, wounded and spent with fatigue, were 
no longer able to resist them. At the same time 
grasping a lance, he turned against his late 
master, crying out, " Follow me, my country- 
men, victory courts us with open arms." The 
Araucanians ashamed at being surpassed by a 
boy, turned with such fury upon their enemies, 
that at the first shock they put them to rout, 
cutting in pieces the Spaniards and their allies, 
so that of the whole of this army, only two Pro- 
maucians had the fortune to escape, by fleeing to 
a neighbouring wood. 

The Spanish general having lost all hope, 
had retired in the beginning of the massacre with 
his chaplain, to prepare himself for death ; but 
being pursued and taken by the victors, he was 
brought before Caupolican, of whom, in an humble 
manner, he implored his life, soliciting the good 
offices of Lautaro, and most solemnly promising 
to quit Chili with all his people. 

The Araucaniangereral, naturally compassion- 
ate, and desirous of obliging Lautaro, who joined 
in soliciting him, was disposed to grant the re- 
quest. But while he was deliberating, an old 
Ulmen of great authority in the country, enraged 
to hear them talk of sparing his life, dispatched 
the unfortunate prisoner with a blow of his club ; 
saying, that they must be mad to trust to the 
promises of an ambitious enemy, who, as soon as 
he had escaped from this danger, would make a 


mock of them, and laugh at his oaths. Caupo- 
lican was highly exasperated at this conduct* 
and would have punished it with severity had not 
the greater part of his officers opposed themselves 
to his just resentment. 

Such was the tragic fate of the conqueror, 
Pedro de Valdivia, a man unquestionably pos- 
sessed of a superior mind, and great political and 
military talents, but who, seduced by the ro- 
mantic spirit of his age, knew not how to employ 
them to the best advantage. His undertakings 
would have proved fortunate, had he properly es- 
timated his own strength, and, without being de- 
ceived by the example of the Peruvians, despised 
the Chilians less. History does not impute to 
him any of those cruelties with which his con- 
temporaries, the other conquerors, are accused. 
It is true, that in the records of the Franciscans, 
two of those monks are mentioned with applause 
for having, by their humane remonstrances, dis- 
suaded him from the commission of those cruelties 
that were at first exercised towards the natives 
of the country ; but this severity does not appear 
to have been so great as to have obtained the 
notice of any historian. He has been bv some 
accused of avarice, and they pretend that, in 
punishment of this vice, the Araucanians put him 
to death by pouring melted gold into his throat ; 
but this is a fiction copied from a similar stprv 
of antiquity. 




This victory, which was gained in the evening, 
was celebrated the day following with, all kind 
of games and diversions, in a meadow surrounded 
with large trees, to which were suspended as 
trophies the heads of their enemies. An immense 
crowd of people from the neighbouring country 
flocked thither to witness with their own eyes the 
destruction of an army which they had till then 
considered as invincible, and to join in the diver- 
sions of the festival. The officers, in token of 
victory, wore the clothes of their slain enemies, 
and Caupolican himself put on the armour and 
surcoat of Valdivia, which was embroidered 
with gold. 




The Spaniards abandon Puren, Angol, and ViU 
larica ; Caupolican lays siege to Imperial and 
Valdivia ; Lautaro defeats the Spanish army 
in Mariguenu, and destroys Conception. 

When the rejoicings were over, Caupolican^ 
taking the young Lautaro by the hand, presented 
him to the national assembly, which had met to 
concert measures for the further prosecution of 
the war, and after having spoken highly in his 
praise, attributing to him the whole success of 
the preceding day, he appointed him his lieu- 
tenant-general extraordinary, with the privilege of 
commanding in chief another army, which he 
intended to raise to protect the frontiers from the 
invasion of the Spaniards. This appointment 
was approved and applauded by all present, as 
Lautaro, besides the inappreciable service he had 
rendered his country, and the nobleness of his 
origin, being one of the order of Ulmenes, was 
endowed with singular beauty and affability, and 
possessed talents far surpassing his years. Their 
sentiments upon the operations of the next cam- 
paign were various. Coloeolo, with a great part 
of the Ulmenes, was of opinion that in the first 


place they ought to free their country from the 
foreign establishments that were still remaining. 
ButTueapel, followed by the most daring of the 
officers, maintained, that in the present circum- 
stances they ought to attack the Spaniards im- 
mediately while in a state of consternation, in 
the very centre of their colonies, in the city of 
Santiago itself, and pursue them if it were pos- 
sible to Spain. Caupolican applauded the senti- 
ments of Tucapel, but adhered to the counsel of 
the elder chiefs, recommending it as the most 
secure and most beneficial for the country. 

Whilst they were deliberating upon these im- 
portant objects, Lincoyan, who was traversing 
the country with a detachment of troops, fell in 
with and attacked a party of fourteen Spaniards 
coming from Imperial to the assistance of Val- 
divia, of whose fate they were uninformed. 
These, in making head against the enemy, whom 
they soon expected to put to flight, regretted 
that their number was not reduced to twelve, in 
order to be able to style themselves, according to 
the chivalrous idea of the age, « the twelve of 
fame." But their wishes were soon more than 
fulfilled, for at the first encounter but seven of 
their company were left, who, taking advantage 
of the swiftness of their horses, escaped, severely 
wounded, to the fortress of Puren. 

Having brought with them the news of the 
total rout of Valdivia's army, the Spanish in- 


habitants of the city of the Frontiers and of 
Puren, thinking themselves insecure within their 
walls, retired to Imperial. The same was the 
case with those of Villarica, who abandoned 
their houses, and took refuge in Valdivia. Thus 
had the Araucanians only these two places to at- 
tack. Caupolican having determined to besiege 
them, committed to Lautaro the care of defending 
the northern frontier. The young Vice Toqui 
fortified himself upon the lofty mountain of 
Mariguenu, situated on the road which leads 
to the province of Arauco, supposing, as it hap- 
pened, that the Spaniards, desirous of revenging 
the death of their general, would take that road 
iu search of Caupolican. This mountain, which 
on several occasions has proved fatal to the Spa- 
niards, has on its summit a large plain inter- 
spersed with shady trees. Its sides are full of 
clefts and precipices ; on the part towards the 
west the sea beats with great violence, and at the 
east it is secured by impenetrable thickets. A 
winding bye-path on the north was the only road 
that led to the summit of the mountain. 

In the meantime, the two Promaucians who 
had alone escaped the destruction of the Spanish 
army, having reached Conception, filled that 
city with the utmost consternation. As soon as 
the general terror had a little subsided, the ma- 
gistrates proceeded to open the instructions of 



- 154 

Valdivia, which he had left with them at his de- 
parture. In these he had named as his successors 

in the government in the event of his death, Al- 
derete, Aguirre, and Francis Villagran. But 
the first being absent in Europe, and the second 
id Cujo, the supreme command devolved upon 
Villagran. This general, who possessed more 
prudence than Valdivia, after making the neces- 
sary preparations, began his march for Arauco, 
with a considerable number of Spanish and auxi- 
liary forces. 

He crossed the Bio-bio without opposition,, 
hut at a little distance from thence, in a narrow 
pass, he encountered a body of Araucanians, by 
whom he was vigorously opposed. But after a 
severe action of three hours they were defeated 
and withdrew, constantly fighting towards the 
summits where Lautaro, defended by a strong 
palisade, awaited their approach with the residue 
of his army. Three companies of the Spanish 
horse were ordered to force the difficult passage 
of the mountain, and having, after great labour 
and fatigue, arrived within a short distance of 
the summit, they were received with a shower of 
stones, arrows, and other missive weapons, which 
were incessantly poured upon their heads. Vil- 
lagran, ia the meantime, perceiving that several 
parties were detached from the camp of the 
enemy, with an intention of surrounding him. 



ordered the musketry to advance, and the fire to 
commence from six field pieces, which he had 
placed in a favourable situation to annoy them. 

The mountain was covered with smoke, and 
resounded with the thunder of the cannon and 
the whistling of bullets that fell upon every side. 
But Lautaro, in the midst of this confusion, 
firmly maintained his post ; and perceiving that 
his principal loss proceeded from the cannon, he 
directed Leucoton, one of his bravest captains, 
to go with his company and take possession of 
them, commanding him at the same time, with an 
authority derived more from his high reputation 
than his office, not to venture to see him again 
until he had executed the order. That valiant 
officer, in (lefiance of death, rushed with such 
violence upon the corps of artillery, that after a 
furious and bloody contest, he carried off all the 
cannon in triumph. 

In the meantime Lautaro, to prevent the Spa- 
niards from sending succours to their artillery, 
attacked them so vigorously with all his troops, 
that, driving horse and foot in confusion before 
him, the Spaniards were thrown into disorder, 
and unable to recover their ranks, precipitately 
betook themselves to flight. Of the Europeans 
and their Indian allies, three thousand were left 
dead upon the field. Villagran, having fallen, 
was on the point of being taken prisoner himself, 
when three of his soldiers, by almost incredible 



feats of valour, rescued him from the hands of 
his enemies, and remounted him on his horse. 
The remaining Spaniards, pursued by the victors, 
spurred on their exhausted horses, in order to 
pass the narrow defile where the battle had com- 
menced, but on their arrival they found it ob- 
structed, by the order of Lautaro, with the 
trunks of fallen trees. Here the engagement 
was again renewed with such violence, that not 
one of the miserable remains of this broken army 
would have escaped, had not Villagran, by a 
desperate effort, opened the pass at the most im- 
minent hazard of his life. The Araucanians, 
although they had lost about seven hundred 
men, continued the pursuit for a long time; but 
at length becoming extremely fatigued, and not 
able to keep up with the horses, they stopped 
with a determination of passing the Bio-bio the 
following day. 

The few Spaniards who escaped the slaughter 
produced, on their arrival at Conception, inde- 
scribable sorrow and consternation. There was 
not a family but had the loss of some relation to 
deplore. The alarm was greatly heightened by 
the news of the near approach of Lautaro. Vil- 
lagran, who thought it impossible to defend the 
city, embarked precipitately the old men, the 
women and the children, on board of two ships 
that were then fortunately in the harbour, with 
orders to the captains to conduct part of them to 


Imperial, and part to Valparaiso ; while with 
the rest of the inhabitants he proceeded by land 
to Santiago. 

Lautaro, on entering the deserted city, found 
in it a very great booty, as its commerce and 
mines had rendered it very opulent, and the 
citizens more attentive to save their lives than 
their riches, had on their departure taken scarcely 
any thing with them except a few provisions. 
After having burned the houses aud razed the 
citadel to its foundation, the victor returned with 
his army to celebrate his triumph in Arauco. 



Vtllagran raises the siege of Imperial and of 
Valdivia ; The small-pox break out among the 
Araucanians ; Conception having been rebuilt, 
Lautaro returns and destroys it ; He marches 
against Santiago, and is killed. 

Meanwhile the commanders of the cities of 
Imperial and Valdivia, closely besieged by Can- 
polican, demanded succours of the governor, 
who, notwithstanding his late losses, failed not 
to send them, with all possible speed, a sufficient 
number of troops for their defence. The Arau- 
eanian general, believing it difficult under such 
circumstances to possess himself of those places, 
raised the siege, and went to join Lautaro, to at- 
tempt with their combined forces some other en- 
terprise of greater importance. 

Villagrao, availing himself of the absence of 
the enemy, ravaged all the country in the vicinity 
of Imperial, burned the houses and the crops, 
and transported to the city all the provisions that 
were not destroyed, Such rigorous measures he 
vindicated by the pretended rights of war, but 
they usually produce no other effect than that of 
distressing the weak and the helpless. In other 



respects he was humane, and averse to violence, 
and his generosity was acknowledged even by his 
enemies. During his government, no one was 
ill treated or put to death except in the field of 

To the terrible calamities that usually follow 
in the train of war, was added that of the pesti- 
lence. Some of the Spanish soldiers, who were 
either infected at the time, or had but recently 
recovered from the small-pox, in the above in- 
cursions made by Villagran, communicated for 
the first time that fatal disease to the Araucanian 
provinces, which made there the greater ravages^ 
as they were entirely unacquainted with it. Of 
the several districts of the country there was one 
whose population amounted to twelve thousand 
persons, of which number not more than one 
hundred escaped with life.* This pestilential 

* The following anecdote will show the horror with which 
the small-pox inspired the Indians : " Some time since, the 
viceroy of Peru sent as a present to the governor, Juan Xara- 
quemada, from Lirai to Chili, several jars of powder, honey, 
wine, olives, and different kinds of seed ; one of these being 
accidentally broken in unlading, the Indians who were in the 
service of the Spaniards having noticed it, imagined that it was 
the purulent matter of the small-pox, which the governor had 
imported in order to disseminate among their provinces, and 
exterminate them by this means. They immediately gave 
notice to their countrymen, who stopped all communication 
and took up arms, killing forty Spaniards who were among 
them in full security of peace. The governor, to revenge this 


disorder, which from its long continuation 
has been more fatal than any other to the 
human race, had been a few years before intro- 
duced into the northern parts of Chili, where it 
has since from time to time re-appeared, attended 
with great mortality to the natives. The southern 
provinces have for more than a century been 
exempted from its ravages, by the precautions 
employed by the inhabitants, to prevent all com- 
munication with the infected countries, as is the 
case with the plague in Europe. 

Whilst Villagran was employing all his at- 
tention, in maintaining as far as possible the 
Spanish power in those parts, and in opposing 
those victorious enemies who were endeavouring 
to annihilate it, he saw himself on the point of 
being compelled to turn his arms against his own 
countrymen. Francis Aguirre, who in Val- 
divia's instructions had been named the second 
as governor, on learning the death of that ge- 
neral, quitted Cujo, where it appears he effected 
nothing of importance, and with sixty men who 
were left of his detachment, returned to Chili, 
determined to possess himself of the government 
either by favour or force. His pretensions must 

outrage, entered the Araucanian territory, and thus, owing to 
the suspicion of these barbarians, was a war excited, which 
was continued until Don Alonzo de Rivera returned a second 
time to assume the government of the kingdom."— Jeronimu 
Quirogas Memoirs of the War of Chili, chap. 74, 


infallibly have produced a civil war between 
Villagran and himself, with great detriment 
to the success of the Spaniards, had they not 
both consented to submit their claims to the de- 
cision of the Royal Audience of Lima. This 
court, whose jurisdiction at that time (1555) 
extended over the whole of South- America, did 
not think proper to commit the government to 
either, but in their place directed that the Cor- 
regidors of the cities should have the command 
each in his respective district, until farther orders. 

The inhabitants, perceiving the inconveniences 
that must result from this poliarchy, especially in 
time of war, sent a remonstrance to the Court of 
Audience, who hearkened to their reasons, and 
appointed Villagran to the command, as more 
experienced in the business of the kingdom than 
Aguirre, but conferred on him only the title of 
Corregidor, ordering him at the same time to re- 
build the city of Conception. Although he was 
convinced of the inutility of this measure, yet, to 
evince his obedience, he proceeded thither im- 
mediately with eighty-five families, whom he 
established there, and defended with a strong 

The natives of the country, indignant to be 
rendered again subject to a foreign yoke, had re- 
Course to their protectors, the Araucanians. 
Caupolican, who, during this interval either 
ihrough ignorance of the proceedings of the 

yo'l. if, , m 


Spaniards or for some other reason of which w3 
are not informed, had not left his encampment, 
sent to their assistance two thousand men under 
the command of Lautaro, who' was well expe- 
rienced in such expeditions. The young general, 
exasperated against what he had termed obstinacy, 
passed the Bio-bio without delay, and attacked 
the Spaniards, who, imprudently confiding in 
their valour, awaited him in the open plain „ 
The first encounter decided the fate of the battle. 
The citizens, struck with terror, returned to the 
fort with such precipitation as not even to have 
an opportunity of closing the gate. The Arau- 
canians entered with them, and killed a great 
number. The remainder were dispersed, part of 
them embarking in a ship which was in the port, 
and part taking refuge in the woods, whence by 
ibye-paths they returned to Santiago. Lautaro, 
having plundered and burned the city as before, 
returned laden with spoils to his wonted station; 
The success of this enterprise excited Caupo- 
lican to undertake once more the sieges of Im- 
perial and Valdivia. The glorious exploits of 
his Lieutenant stimulated him to attempts of 
greater importance, and such as were worthy of 
the supreme command, Laufaro undertook to 
make a diversion of the Spanish forces, by march- 
ing against Santiago, as the capture of this city 
appeared to him an enterprise of not much diffi- 
cult v, not with standing its great distance. lib 


Continued victories had so heightened his con- 
fidence, that nothing appeared to him impossible 
to be overcome. 

In order to carry into effect this hazardous en- 
terprise, he required but five hundred men,, to be 
Selected by himself; but those who pressed to 
march under his standard were so numerous, 
that he was compelled to receive another hun- 
dred. The two generals then separated amidst 
the joyful acclamations of the nation,, who, 
thoughtless of the reverses of fortune, flattered 
themselves with the most fortunate issue to their 

Lautaro, at the head of his six hundred com- 
panions, traversed all the provinces lying between 
the Bio-bio and the Maule, without doing the 
least injury to the natives, who called him their 
deliverer. But when he had passed this last 
river, he began cruelly to lay waste the lands of 
the hated Promaucians, whom, had he then 
treated with kindness, he would have detached 
from the Spanish interest, and united to his party. 
But the intemperate desire of revenge did not 
allow him to foresee the good effects that this 
opportune reconciliation might produce to the 
common cause. 

After having taken revenge, in some measure, 

upon these betrayers of the country as he called 

them, he fortified himself in their territory, in aa 

advantageous post, situated on the shore of the 




Hio-claro, with the view, most probably, of 
gaining- more correct information of the state of 
the city he intended to attack, or to await there 
the coming of his enemies, and to cut them off 
from time to time. This ill-timed delay was 
very important to the inhabitants of Santiago, 
who, when they were first informed of his ap- 
proach, could not believe it possible that he 
should have the boldness to make a journey of 
three hundred miles in order to attack them. 
But undeceived by the refugees of Conception, 
whom fatal experience had too well taught the 
enterprising character of this mortal enemy of 
Spain, they thought proper to make some pre- 
parations for defence. With this view they first 
dispatched Juan Godinez, with twenty-five horse- 
men, to the country of the Promaucians, in order 
to learn if the information they had received 
was true, to watch the motions and discover the 
designs of the enemy, and to send back im- 
mediate intelligence. He was, however, able to 
execute but a part of his commission ; for, being 
unexpectedly attacked by a detachment of the 
Araucanians, lie returned precipitately, with his 
men diminished in number and filled with con- 
sternation, to bring the news. The victors 
took upon this occasion ten horses and some 
arms, which they made use of in the succeeding 
actions. The Corregidor, who was at that time 
siek, gave orders to his eldest son, Pedro, to 


marcli with such troops as he could raise against 
Lautaro, and proceeded to fortify the city in the 
besl manner possible, guarding all its approaches 
with strong works. Pedro in the meantime at- 
tacked the Araucanians in their entrenchments, 
who, instructed by their commander, after a 
short resistance pretended to take flight; but no 
sooner had their enemies entered the abandoned 
enclosure, than they turned and fell upon them 
with such impetuosity, that they entirely routed 
them, and the cavalry alone were able to save 
themselves from slaughter. 

Young Villagran, receiving new reinforce- 
ments, returned three times to the attack of Lau- 
iaro's camp, but being constantly repulsed with 
loss, he encamped his army in a low meadow, 
on the shore of the M ataquito. The Araucaniah 
general, who occupied a neighbouring mountain, 
formed the plan of inundating at night the Spanish 
encampment, by turning upon them a branch of 
the river. But this bold design, which would 
have ensured the destruction of the Spaniards, 
failed of success, as Villagran, being informed 
of it by a spy, retired, a short time before it 
was carried into execution,, with his army to 

The elder Villagran having recovered his 
health, and being strongly solicited by the citi- 
zens,who every moment expected to see the Arau- 
canians at their gates, at length, in 1556, began 


his march with 196 Spaniards and 1000 auxili- 
aries in search of Lautaro. But too well re- 
membering the defeat of Mariguenu, he re- 
solved to attack him by surprise. With this 
intent he quitted the great road, secretly directed 
his march by the sea shore, and, under the 
guidance of a spy by a private path came at day 
break upon the Araucanian encampment. 

Lautaro, who at that moment had retired to 
rest, after having been upon guard, as was his 
custom during the night, leaped from his bed at 
the first alarm of the sentinels, and ran to the 
intrenchments to observe the enemy. At the 
same time a dart, hurled by one of the Indian 
auxiliaries, pierced his heart, and he fell lifeless 
in the arms of his companions. It would seem 
that fortune, hitherto propitious, was desirous 
by so sudden a death to save him from the mor- 
tification of finding himself for the first time in 
his life defeated. It is, however, not impro- 
bable that his genius, so fertile in expedients, 
would have suggested to him some plan to have 
baffled the attempts of the assailants, if this 
fatal accident had not occurred. 

Encouraged by this unexpected success, Vil- 
lagran attacked the fortification on all sides, and 
forced an entrance, notwithstanding the obstinate 
resistance of the Araucanian s, who, retiring to 
an an< ' 


e of tlie works, determined rather to be 
pieces than to surrender themselves ttf 


those who had slain their beloved general. In 
yam the Spanish commander repeatedly offered 
them quarter. None of them would accept it 
excepting a few of the neighbouring Indians^ 
who happened accidentally to be in their camp. 
The Araucanians perished to the last man, and 
fought with such obstinacy that they sought for 
death by throwing themselves on the lances of 
their enemies. 

This victory, which was not obtained without 
great loss by the victors, was celebrated for 
ihree days in succession in Santiago, and in the 
•other Spanish settlements, with all those demon- 
strations of joy customary upon occasions of 
£he greatest success. The Spaniards felicitated 
themselves on being at last freed from an enemy* 
who at the early age of nineteen had already ob- 
tained so many victories over their nation, and 
-who possessed talents capable of entirely de- 
stroying their establishments in Chili, and even 
harassing them in Peru, as he had resolved upon 
when he had restored the liberty of his native 

As soon as the terror inspired by this young 
hero had ceased with his life, the sentiments of 
hostility, as almost always happens, were suc- 
ceeded by those of generosity. His enemies 
.themselves highly applauded his valour and 
.military talents, and compared him to the most 
m 4 




celebrated generals that have appeared in the 
world. Thej even called him the Chilian Han- 
nibal, from a fancied resemblance between his 
character, and that of the famous Carthaginian 
general, although, in some respects, it had a 
much greater similarity to that of Scipio. To 
use the words of the Abbe Olivarez— « It is 
not just to depreciate his merit whom, had he 
been ours, we should have elevated to the rank 
of a hero. If we celebrate with propriety the 
martial prowess of the Spanish Viriatus, we 
ought not to obscure that of the American Lau- 
taro, when both contended with the same valour 
in the cause of their country." 

The Araucanians for a long time lamented 
the loss of their valiant countryman,, to whom 
they owed all the success of their arms, and on 
whose conduct and valour they entirely relied 
for the recovery of their liberties. His name is 
still celebrated in their heroic songs, and his 
actions proposed as the most glorious model for 
the imitation of their youth. But above all; 
Caupolican felt this fatal loss : As he was a 
sincere lover of his country, far from thinking 
he was freed from a rival, he believed he had 
lost his chief co-operator in the glorious work 
of restoring it to freedom. As soon as he re- 
ceived the mournful news, he quitted the siege 
of Imperial, which was reduced to the last ex- 


iremity, and returned with his army to the fron- 
tiers to protect them from the incursions of the 
enemy, who, he had learned from his spies, ex- 
pected a large supply of men and warlike stores 
from Peru^ with a new commander. 



Jjon Garcia de Mendoza arrives at Chili with 
a reinforcement of troops; His expedition 
against Canpolwan. 

Philip the Second, who had succeeded his fa- 
ther, Charles the Fifth, on the throne of Spain, 
having- learned the death of Valdivia, gave in 
charge to his agent Alderete, the government 
and the conquest of Chili, furnishing him for 
this purpose with six hundred regular troops. 
During the passage his sister, who was accus- 
tomed to read in bed, set fire by accident to the 
ship in the vicinity of Porto-Bello. Of the 
whole number, Alderete and three soldiers were 
all that escaped, and he himself soon after, over- 
come with grief and disappointment, died in 
the little island of Taboga, in the gulph of 

The Marquis of Canete, viceroy of Peru, 
being informed of this disaster, appointed to the 
vacant office his son Don Garcia Hurtado de 
Mendoza. But as this charge had now become 
very dangerous, he resolved that at his departure 
he should be accompanied by a body of troops 
capable of supporting him., and acquiring him, 



if possible, the glory of terminating with su<s 

eess the obstinate war with the Araucanians. 

With this view he caused a great number of 

recruits- to be raised throughout his extensive 

viceroyalty. The civil dissentions being at an 

end, Peru at that time abounded with military t 

adventurers who were desirous of employment. 

Of course he was in a short time joined by a 

large number of soldiers, part of whom, from a 

warlike spirit, and others from a desire to obtaia 

favour with the viceroy, offered to fight under 

the banners of his son. 

The infantry, well equipped and appointed 


with a great quantity of military stores, em- 


barked on board of ten ships under the command 


of Don Garcia in person, and the cavalry pur- 


sued their way by land under the orders of the 

quarter-master-general, Garcia Ramon. The 

fleet arrived in April, 1 557, in the bay of Con-r 

ceptipn, and came to anchor near the island of 

Quinquina, which, being the most secure situa- 

tion, had been chosen for the head quarters. 

The few inhabitants who were found there 

bravely attempted io prevent the disembarkation; 

but being soon dispersed by the artillery, they 

retired in their piragues to the continent. The 

governor having taken some of the hindmost, 

pent two or three to the Araucanians, with di- 

rections to inform them of his arrival, and the 




desire lie bad of settling a lasting peace with 

The Ulmenes^ being convened to consider of 
this embassy, were generally of opinion that no 
propositions ought to be listened to from an 
en< rny who had returned in greater force, it 
being impossible that they should be other than 
treacherous or unfair. But old Colocolo, who 
was the soul of the union, observed that no in- 
jj r could arise from their hearing the proposals 
of the Spanish general ; that this was a favour- 
able opportunity for discovering his designs, and 
of obtaining a knowledge of his forces ; that 
foi ilns purpose he thought it advisable to send 
a discerning and intelligent man, who, under the 
pretence of congratulating the new governor upon 
his arrival, and of thanking him for the wish 
thai he expressed of coming to an amicable ac- 
commodation, would gain information of what- 
ever he should think of importance to regulate 
th-*ir future conduct. 

Caupolican, with the greater part of the old 
©fiVers, adopted this wise counsel, and confided 
this important commission to Millalauco, who 
po sessed all the qualities requisite for such an 
envoy. This ambassador passed the narrow strait 
that separates the island of Quinquina from the 
continent, and, with all the pride, peculiar to his 
nation, presented himself to the Spaniards, They 


In return, to give him a great idea of their power, 
received him arranged in order of battle, and 
conducted him amidst the discharge of their ar- 
tillery to the tent of the general. Millalauco, 
not in the least disconcerted by all this millitary 
parade, complimented the governor in the name 
of Caupolican, and in a few words declared to 
him the pleasure that he and all his people would 
feel in the establishment of an honourable and 
advantageous peace to both nations, adding, that 
he was induced to this, not from any dread of 
his power, but from motives of humanity. 

Don Garcia was by no means satisfied with 
these vague offers, so little correspondent to his 
views ; he replied, however, with the same ge- 
neral professions respecting peace, and after 
having regaled the ambassador in a magnificent 
manner, he ordered his officers to conduct him 
over the whole encampment, in order to intimi- 
date him by the appearance of the immense 
military preparations that he had brought with 
him. Nothing could better suit the wishes of 
Millalauco ; he observed every thing with at- 
tention, though with apparent indifference, and 
taking leave of the Spaniards, returned home. 
The Araucanians, on receiving such particular 
information, placed sentinels along the coast to 
observe the movements of their enemies, and 
began to prepare for war, which they believed 
to be near and inevitable. 


Don Garcia, however, continued almost the 
whole winter in the island, waiting for the ca- 
valry from Peru, and the reinforcements he had 
required from the cities of his jurisdiction. At 
length, on the night of the 6th of August, he 
privately landed one hundred and thirty men 
with several engineers upon the plain of Con- 
ception, and immediately took possession of 
Mount Pinto, which commands the harbour, 
where he constructed a fort, furnished with a 
large number of cannon and a deep ditch. 

The Araucanian spies failed not to give im- 
mediate information to Caupolican of what had 
taken places That general, hastily collecting 
his troops, passed the Bio-bio on the 9th of the 
same month, and on the next morning at day- 
break, a period remarkable in Europe for the 
defeat of the French at St. Quintin, he attacked 
the fortress upon three sides, having sent for- 
ward a body of pioneers to fill up the ditch with 
fascines and trunks of trees. The attack was 
continued with all the fury and obstinacy so 
natural to that people. Numbers mounted on 
the parapet, and some even leapt within the 
. walls, destroying all that they met with. But the 
cannon and the musketry, directed by skillful 
hands, made so dreadful a slaughter, that the 
ditch was filled with dead bodies, which served 
for bridges to the new combatants who fear- 
lessly replaced their slain companions. Tucapel, 


hurried on by his unparalleled rashness, threw 
himself into the fort, and, killing four of his 
enemies with his formidable mace, escaped by 
leaping over a precipice amidst a shower of balls. 
Whilst the combat raged with such fury 
around the fortress, the Spaniards who were in 
the island, perceiving the danger of the be- 
sieged, came over to their aid, and formed them- 
selves in order of battle. Caupolican observing 
the disembarkation, sent immediately a part of 
his troops against them. These, after a severe 
conflict of several hours, were driven back to 
the mountain, so that the assailants were placed 
between two fires. They nevertheless lost not 
their courage, and continued fighting till mid- 
day. At length, extremely fatigued with the 
length of the combat, they withdrew to the Bio- 
bio with a determination to raise new forces and 
return to the attack. 

Caupolican having in a short time reinforced 
his army, began his march towards Conception, 
but learning on the road that the Spaniards had" 
received a numerous reinforcement, he halted on 
the shore of the Bio- bio, deeply chagrined at 
not being able to effect what Lautaro had twice 
performed with the universal applause of the 
nation. In fact, the day preceding, two thousand 
auxiliaries had arrived at Conception, with the 
cavalry, from Peru, consisting of a thousand 




men well armed, and likewise another squadron 
of Spanish horse from. Imperial. 

After his army had sufficiently recovered from 
their fatigues, Don Garcia resolved to go in 
quest of the Araucanians in their own territory. 
For this purpose he crossed the Bio-bio in boats 
well equipped, at six miles from its mouth, where 
that river is fifteen hundred paces broad. Cau- 
polican made no attempt to obstruct his passage, 
as the cannon, placed upon the boats, com- 
manded the whole of the opposite shore ; but he 
had occupied a position not far distant, flanked 
with thick woods, which, if he were defeated, 
would facilitate his retreat. 

The battle began with a skirmish that was 
favourable to the Araucanians. The Spanish 
advanced parties falling in with those of Caupo- 
lican were repulsed with loss, notwithstanding 
the assistance sent them by Ramon the quarter- 
master-general. Alonzo Reynoso, who was like- 
wise dispatched to their aid with fifty horse, ex- 
perienced a similar fate, leaving several of his 
men dead upon the field. The two armies at 
length met. The Araucanians, encouraged by 
the advantage they had gained, endeavoured to 
come to close combat with their enemies, not- 
withstanding the heavy fire they had to sustain 
from eight pieces of artillery in front of the 
Spanish army. But when they came withm 


reach of the musketry, they were not able to 
advance Further, or resist the fire which was 
well kept up by the veteran troops of Peru. 
After many ineffectual attempts, they began to 
give way and fall into confusion from the va- 
cancies caused in their ranks, by the loss of their 
most determined soldiers. The cavalry at length 
completely routed them, making a great slaughter 
of them in their flight to the woods. 

Don Garcia, either from disposition or policy, 
was strongly inclined to pursue rigorous mea- 
sures. He was the first in this war who in- 
troduced, contrary to the opinion of a majority 
of his officers, the barbarous practice of muti- 
lating,* or of putting to death the prisoners ; a 
system that may serve to awe and restrain a base 

* Don Garcia permitted his allies to be as cruel as himself. 
" They did cut off from certain Indians, being prisoners, the 
calves of their legs to eat them, and they roasted them for 
that purpose ; aud that which is of more admiration, they ap- 
plied unto the place where they were cut, leaves of certain 
herbs, and there came not out a drop of blood— and many did 
see it. And this was done in the city of Santiago, in the pre- 
sence of D. Garcia de Mendcza, which was a thing that made 
all men marvel at it." 

Pedro de Osma y Xara y Zeio mentions this in a letter to 
Monardes the physician, written from Lima in 1 568. I know 
not whether it is possible that so powerful a styptic can exist- 
They who would -not believe that the Abyssinians eat food 
with the blood therein, which is the life, must have been 
ignorant of the live cannibalism of some of the American 
savages.— E. E. 

VOL. If. *r 


people, or one accustomed to servitude, but a 
generous nation detests cruelty, and it only serves 
to exasperate and render them irreconcileable. 
Among the prisoners taken upon this occasion 
was one more daring than any of the others, called 
Galverino, whose hands Don Garcia ordered 
to be cut off. He returned to his countrymen, 
and showing* his bloody mutilated stumps, in- 
flamed them with such fury against the Spa- 
niards, that they all swore never to make peace 
with them, and to put to death any one who 
should have the baseness to propose such a mea- 
sure. Even the very women, excited by a desire 
of revenge, offered to take arms and to fight by 
the side of their "husbands, as they did in the 
subsequent battles. From hence originated the 
fable of the Chilian Amazons, placed by some 
authors in the southern districts of that country. 
The victorious army penetrated into the pro- 
vince of Arauco, constantly harassed by the 
flying camps of the Araucanians, who left them 
not a moment's rest. Don Garcia, when he ar- 
rived at Melipuru, jmt to the torture several of 
the natives whom his soldiers had taken, in order 
to obtain information of Caupolican, but not- 
withstanding the severity of their torments, none 
of them would ever discover t".e place of his re- 
treat. The Araucanian general, on being in- 
formed of this -barbarous conduct, sent word to 
him by a messenger, that he was but a short 


distance, and would come to meet him the fol- 
lowing day. The Spaniards,, who could not con- 
ceive the motive of the message, were alarmed/ 
and passed the whole night under arms. 

At day-break Caupolican appeared with his 
army arranged in three lines. The Spanish ca- 
valry charged with fury the first line, com- 
manded by Caupolican in person, who gave or- 
ders to his pikemen to sustain with levelled spears 
the attack of the horse, and the mace bearers 
with their heavy clubs to strike at their heads. 
The cavalry by this unexpected reception being 
thrown into confusion, the Araucanian general, 
followed by his men, broke into the centre or* 
the Spanish infantry with great slaughter, killing 
five enemies with his own hand. Tucapel, ad- 
vancing in another quarter with his division, at 
the first attack broke his lance in the body of a 
Spaniard, and instantly drawing his sword, slew 
seven others. In these various encounters he re- 
ceived several severe wounds, but perceiving the 
valiant Rencu surrounded by a crowd of enemies, 
he fell with such fury upon them, that after 
killing a considerable number, he rescued his 
former rival, and conducted him safely out of 

Victory, for a long time undecided, was at 
length on the point of declaring for the Arauea- 
nians, when Don Garcia perceiving his men 
ready to give way, gave orders to a body of re- 

n % 


serve to attack the division of the enemy, com- 
manded by Lincoyan and Ongolmo. This order,, 
which was promptly executed, preserved the 
Spanish army from total ruin. This line of the 
Araucanians being broken, fell back upon their 
victorious countrymen, who were thrown into 
such confusion, that Caupolican, after several 
ineffectual efforts, despairing of being able to 
restore order, sounded a retreat, and yielded to 
his enemies a victory that he deemed secure. 
The Araucanian army would have been cut in 
pieces, had not Rencu, by posting himself in a 
neighbouring wood with a squadron of valiant 
youth, called thither the attention of the victors, 
who pursued the fugitives with that deadly fury, 
that characterized trie soldiers of that age. That 
chief, after having sustained the violence of 
their attack, for a time sufficient in his opinion 
to ensure the safety of his countrymen, retired 
with his companions by a secret path, scoffing at 
his enemies. 



Bon Garcia orders twelve Ulmenes to oe hanged ; 
He founds the city of Canete ; Caupolican, at- 
tempting to surprise it, is defeated, and his 
army entirely dispersed. 

The Spanish general, before he quitted Meli- 
rupu, caused twelve Ulmenes whom he found 
among the prisoners, to be hung to the trees that 
surrounded the field of battle. Galvarino was 
also condemned to the same punishment. This 
unfortunate youth, notwithstanding the loss of 
his hands, had accompanied the Araucanian 
army, had never ceased during the battle to 
incite his countrymen to fight vigorously, show- 
ing his mutilated arms, while he attempted with 
his teeth and feet to do all the injury he could 
to his enemies. One of the Ulmenes, overcome 
with terror, petitioned for his life, but Galvarino 
reproached him so severely for his cowardice, 
and inspired him with such contempt for death, 
that he refused the pardon which was granted 
him, and demanded to die the first, as an atone- 
ment for his weakness, and the scandal he had 
brought upon the Araucanian name. 

After this fruitless execution, Don Garcia pro- 


ceeded to the province of Tucapel, and coming 
to the place where Valdivia had been defeated, 
he built there, in contempt of his conquerors, a 
city, which he called Canete, from the titular ap- 
pellation of his family. As this settlemejt was 
in the centre of the enemy's country, he thought 
proper to strengthen it with a good palisade, a 
ditch, a rampart, and a great number of cannon, 
and gave the command to Alonzo Reynoso, with 
a select garrison. After which, imagining that 
the Araucanians, who had been defeated in three 
successive battles, were no longer in a condition 
to oppose his conquering arms, he departed for 
Imperial, where he was received in triumph. 

Soon after his arrival at Imperial, he sent from 
thence to the inhabitants of his new city a plen- 
tiful supply of provisions, under a strong convoy, 
who were attacked and routed in the narrow 
pass of Cayucupil by a body of Araucanians. 
But these having ill-timedly began to seize the 
baggage, gave the Spaniards an opportunity of 
escaping with little loss, and reaching the place 
of their destination. The citizens received them 
with the greatest demonstrations of joy, their 
assistance being much wanted in case Caupoli- 
can, as was reported, should attack and en- 
deavour to force them from that post. Nor 
were these merely idle rumours. That indefati- 
gable general, whom misfortune seemed to in- 
spire with greater courage, a few days after- 


wards made a furious assault upon the place, in 
which his valiant troops, with arms so far inferior 
to their enemies, supported a continual fire for 
five hours, now scaling the rampart, now pulling 
up or burning the palisades. But perceiving 
that valour alone could not avail him in this 
difficult enterprise, he resolved to suspend the 
attack, and seek some more certain means of at- 
taining his end. 

With this view he persuaded one of his offi- 
cers, named Pran, who had the reputation of 
being very cunning and artful, to introduce him- 
self into the garrison as a deserter, in order to 
find means to deliver it up. Pran accordingly 
obtained admission under that character, and 
conducted himself with the profoundest dissimu- 
lation. He soon formed a friendship with one of 
the Chilians who served under the Spaniards, 
called Andrew, and who appeared to him a proper 
instrument of his designs. One day, either art- 
fully to sound him, or to flatter him, Andrew 
pretended to sympathize with his friend on the 
misfortunes of his country. Pran, who had as 
yet given no intimation of his design, seized 
with much readiness this occasion, and dis- 
covered to him the motive of his pretended de- 
sertion, earnestly entreating him to aid in the 
execution of his scheme ; this was to introduce 
some Araucanian soldiers into the place, at the 
time when the Spaniards, wearied with their 

N 4f 


nightly watch, had retired to take their siesta* 
The craftj Chilian highly praised his project, 
and offered himself to keep a gate open on the 
day assigned for the enterprise. The Arauca- 
man, elated with joy, hastened to give informa- 
tion to Caupolican, who was at a short distance, 
and Andrew proceeded immediately to disclose 
the plot to the commander of the fort, who di- 
rected him to keep up the deception by appearing 
to carry it on, in order to take the enemy in their 
own snare. 

Caupolican, occupied with an ardent desire of 
accomplishing this enterprise, lost sight on this 
occasion of his wonted prudence, and too easily 
reposed faith in this ill-concerted scheme. In 
order the better to devise his measures, he ex- 
pressed a wish to converse with the Chilian; 
Pran immediately gave notice to his supposetl 
friend, who appeared before Caupolican with all 
that air of respect and flattering show of attach- 
ment which villains of this stamp know so well 
to assume. He broke out into invectives against 
the Spaniards, whom he said he had always de- 
tested, and renewed his promise, declaring that 
nothing could be easier than the execution of 
the plot. The Araucanian general applauded 
his patriotism, loaded him with caresses, and 
promised to give him, if the enterprise should 

* Afternoon sleep. 


succeed, an Ulmenate, with the office of first 
captain of his army. He then showed him his 
troop s, appointed the next day for the execution 
of their scheme, and dismissed him with the 
the strongest demonstrations of esteem and fa- 
vour. The Spaniards, informed of all/ em- 
ployed that night in making every preparation 
to .-obtain the greatest possible advantage from 
the treachery of their ally. 

When the principal officers of the Araucanians 
were informed of the intention of their general, 
they openly disapproved of it, as dishonourable 
and disgraceful to the national spirit, and refused 
to accompany him in the expedition. Adhering, 
nevertheless, with obstinacy to his design, he 
began his march at day-break, r with three thou- 
sand men for Canete, in the vicinity of which he 
lay concealed until the time appointed, when 
Pran came to inform him from Andrew that all 
was ready. The Araucanians then proceeded in 
silence to the city, and finding the passage free, 
began to enter it. But the Spaniards having 
allowed entrance to a certain number, suddenly 
closed the gate, and at the same moment com- 
menced a fire with grape shot from all their 
cannon upon those without. 

Dreadful was the slaughter made among them, 
and the more so as it was wholly unexpected. 
The horse then made a sally from another gate, 
and completed the destruction of those who had 


escaped the fire of the cannon. Caupolican 
had the fortune, or rather misfortune, to escape 
the general slaughter of his men. He retired 
with a few attendants to the mountains, whence 
he hoped soon to descend with a new army ca- 
pable of maintaining the field. While the ca- 
valry were giving a loose to their fury on those 
without, the infantry were employed in butcher- 
ing those within the walls, who, having lost all 
hope of escape, rather chose to be cut in pieces 
than to surrender themselves. The too cre- 
dulous Pran, perceiving his error, rushed amongst 
the foremost against his enemies, and by an 
honourable death escaped the well-merited re- 
proaches of his imprudence. Among the few 
who were taken prisoners were three Ulmenes, 
who were fastened to the mouths of cannon and 
blown into the air. 



Expedition of Don Garcia to the Archipelago of 
Chiloe ; Foundation of Osorno ; Caupolican 
taken and impaled. 

Don Garcia, considering the Araucanian war 
as terminated after this destructive battle, ordered 
the city of Conception to be rebuilt; and, de- 
sirous of adding to the laurels of a soldier those 
of a conqueror, so highly valued in that age, in 
1558 marched with a numerous body of troops 
against the Cunches, who had not yet been op- 
posed to the Spanish arms. This nation, when 
they first heard of the arrival of the strangers, 
met to deliberate whether they should submit, or 
resist their victorious forces. An Araucanian 
exile, called Tunconobal, who was present at 
the assembly, being desired to give his opinion 
upon the measures proposed, replied in the fol 
lowing terms : 

" Be cautious how you adopt either of these 
measures; as vassals you will be despised and 
compelled to labour, as enemies you will be ex- 
terminated. If you wish to free yourselves of 
these dangerous visitors, make them believe you 
are miserably poor. Hide your property, par- 





ticularly jour gold ; they will not remain where 
they have no expectation of finding that sole ob- 
ject of their wishes. Send them such a present 
as will impress them with an idea of jour povertj, 
and in the meantime retire to the woods.'* 

The Cunches approved the wise counsel of the 
Araucanian, and commissioned him, with nine 
natives of the countr y, to carry the present which 
he had recommended to the Spanish general. 
Accordingly, clothing himself and companions 
in wretched rags, he appeared with everj mark 
of fear before that officer, and after compliment- 
ing him in rude terms, presented him a basket 
containing some roasted lizards and wild fruits. 
The Spaniards, who could not refrain from 
laughter at the appearance of the ambassadors 
and their presents, began to dissuade the governor 
from pursuing an expedition which, from all ap- 
pearances, would prove unproductive. But al- 
though he was persuaded that these people were 
poor and wretched, yet, lest he should discover 
too great facilitj in relinquishing his plan, he ex- 
horted his troops to prosecute the expedition that 
had been undertaken, assuring them that, further 
on, according to the information he had received, 
they would find a country that abounded in all 
the metals. This was a circumstance by no 
means improbable, it being very usual in America 
after passing frightful desarts to meet with the 
richest countries. He then inquired of the Cun- 


dies the best road to the south. Tunconobal 
directed him towards the west, which was the 
most rough and mountainous, and on being ap 
plied to for a guide, gave him one of his com- 
panions, whom he charged to conduct the army 
by the most desolate and difficult roads of the 
coast. The guide pursued so strictly the in- 
struction of the Araucanian, that the Spaniards, 
who in their pursuit of conquest were accus- 
tomed to surmount with ease the severest fa- 
tigues, acknowledged that they had never before, 
in any of their marches, encountered difficulties 
comparable with these. Their impatience was 
greatly augmented on the fourth day, when their 
pretended guide quitted them, and they found 
themselves in a desart surrounded by precipices, 
from whence they perceived no way to extricate 
themselves. All their constancy and perseverance 
would have been insufficient to support them, if 
Don Garcia had not incessantly encouraged them 
with the flattering hope of soon reaching the 
happy country which he had promised them. 

Having at length overcome all obstacles, they 
came to the top of a high mountain, from whence 
they discovered the great Archipelago of Ancud, 
more commonly called Chiloe, whose channels 
were covered with a great number of boats navi- 
gated with sails and oars. This unexpected 
prospect filled them with joy. As they had for 
many days suffered from hunger, they hastened 


to the shore, and were highly delighted on seeing 
a boat make towards them, on board of which 
were fifteen persons handsomely clothed. With- 
out the least apprehension they immediately 
leaped on shore, and saluting the Spaniards with 
much cordiality, inquired who they were, whither 
they were going, and if they were in want of any 
thing. The Spaniards asked them for provi- 
sions : the chief of this friendly people imme- 
diately ordered all the provisions that were in the 
boat to be brought, and in the most hospitable 
manner distributed them among them, refusing 
to accept any thing in return, and promised to 
send them a large supply from the circumjacent 

Indeed, scarcely had these famished adven- 
turers encamped, when there arrived from all 
quarters piragues loaded with maize, fruit, and 
fish, which were in like manner distributed to 
them gratuitously. The Spaniards, constantly 
regaled by these islanders, coasted the Archipe- 
lago to the bay of Reloncavi, and some went 

e J 

over to the neighbouring islands, where th^ 
found land well cultivated, and women employed 
in spinning wool, mixed with the feathers of sea 
birds, from which they made their clothes. The 
celebrated poet Ercilla was one of the party, and 
solicitous of the reputation of having proceeded 
further south than any other European, he c rossed 
the gulph, and upon the opposite shore inscribed 


on the bark of a tree some verses containing his 
name and the time of the discovery, the 31st of 
January, 1559. 

Don Garcia, satisfied with having been the 
first to discover by land the Archipelago of Chi- 
loe, returned, taking for his guide one of those 
islanders, who conducted him safely to Imperial 
through the country of the Huilliches, which is 
for the most part level, aud abounds in provi- 
sions. The inhabitants, who are similar in every 
respect to their western neighbours, the Cun~ 
chese, made no opposition to his passage. He 
there founded, or according to some writers, re- 
built the city of Osorno, which increased rapidly, 
not less from its manufactories of woollen and 
linen stuffs, than from the fine gold procured 
from its mines, which were afterwards destroyed 
by the Toqui Paillamacu. 

During this expedition, Alonzo Reynoso, com- 
mander of Canete, after having for a long time 
attempted, by offers of reward and by means of 
torture, to obtain from the natives information of 
the retreat of Caupolican, at length found one 
less inflexible, who promised to discover the 
place where he had concealed himself since his 
last defeat. A detachment of cavalry was im- 
mediately sent under the guidance of this spy, 
and at day-break' made prisoner of that great 
man, but not till after a gallant resistance from 
ten of his most faithful soldiers, who would not 



abandon him. His wife, who never ceased ex- 
horting him to die rather than surrender, on 
seeing him taken, indigos ntly threw towards'him 
his infant sen, saying, she would retain nothing 
that belonged to a coward. 

The detachment returned to the city amidst 
the rejoicings of the populace, and conducted 
their prisoner to Reynoso, who immediately or- 
dered him to be impaled and dispatched with 
arrows. On hearing his sentence, Caupolican, 
without the least change of countenance, or 
abatement of his wonted dignity, coolly addressed 
Reynoso in these words : « My death, general, 
can answer no possible end, except that of in- 
flaming tfie inveterate hatred which my country- 
men already entertain against yours/ They will 
be far from being discouraged by the loss of 
an unfortunate chief. From my ashes will 
arise many other Caupolicans, who will prove 
more fortunate than I have been. But if you 
spare my life, from the great influence I possess 
in the country, I may be serviceable to the in- 
terests of your sovereign, and the propagation 
of your religion, which, as you say, is the onlv 
object of this destructive war. But if you are 
determined that I shall die, send me to Spain 
where, if your king thinks proper to condemn 
me, I may end my days without causing new 
disturbances in my country." 

Vain were the attempts of the unfortunate 


general to prevail upon Reynoso, whose name is 
lield in detestation not only by the Araucanians, 
but by the Spaniards themselves, who have ever 
reprobated his conduct, as contrary to those 
principles of generosity on which they pride 
themselves as a nation. He ordered the sentence 
to be immediately executed ; and a priest, who 
had been sent for to converse with the prisoner, 
pretending that he had converted him, hastily 
administered the sacrament of baptism. 

After this mock ceremony, he was conducted, 
amidst a crowd of people, to a scaffold that had 
been erected for his execution : But when he saw 
the instrument of punishment, which until then 
he did not clearly comprehend, and a negro pre- 
pared to execute him, he was so exasperated, 
that, with a furious kick, he hurled the execu- 
tioner from the scaffold, exclaiming, " Is there 
no sword, and some less unworthy hand to be 
found to put to dt-ih a man like myself? This 
has nothing in it of justice — it is base revenge/' 
He was, however, seized by numbers, and com 
elled to undergo the cruel and ignominious 
death to which he had been condemned. 





Successes ofCaiipolicanthe Second; Siege of Im- 
perial; Battle of Quipeo fatal to the Arauca- 
nians ; Death of Caupolican; Termination of 
the Government of Don Garcia. 

Soon were the predictions of the great Caupo- 
lican verified. Instigated by the most unbounded 
rage, the Araucanians immediately proceeded to 
elect a Toqui, capable of revenging the ignomi- 
nious death of their unfortunate general. The 
majority of the electors were of opinion, that in 
the present circumstances the fierce Tucapel was 
better qualified than any other to sustain the im- 
portant office. But this choice was by no means 
agreeable to the sentiments o? Colocolo : he de- 
clared himself in favour of young Caupolican, 
the eldest son of the late general, who possessed 
the talents of his celebrated father. This opinion 
was adopted and confirmed by the Ulmenes. 
Tucapel, perceiving that the affections of the 
nation were placed upon his competitor, had a 
second time the magnanimity to yield his claim 
to the supreme command without murmuring ; 
he only required to be elected Vice Toqui, which 
was granted him. 


The new general immediately collected an 
army, and crossed the Bio-bio, resolving to at- 
tack the city of Conception, which he had been 
informed was defended only by a few soldiers. 
Reynoso, having learned his intention, followed 
him with five hundred men, and coming up with 
him at Talcaguano, a place but a short distance 
from that city, offered him battle. The young 
commander, encouraging his soldiers by his 
words and his example, fell with such fury upon 
the Spaniards, that he entirely defeated them; 
Reynoso, pursued and wounded by Tucapel, had 
the good fortune to be able to repass the Bio-bio 
with a few horse that had escaped the slaughter. 
He immediately collected more troops, and re- 
turned to attack the Araucanian camp ; but 
meeting with no better success than before, he 
was compelled to abandon the enterprise. 

At the close of this second action, Millalauco, 
who had been sent to compliment the Spaniards 
in Quinquina, returned with the news that Don 
Garcia had quitted Imperial, with a large body 
of troops, and was laying w- ste the neighbouring 
provinces. On this information Caupolican, by 
the advice of Colocolo, deferred the siege of 
Conception, and hastened to give them assistance, 
leaving a number of men under the command of 
Millalauco, to oppos the attempts of Reynoso. 
Don Garcia, however, being informed of his 
march, withdrew to Imperial, after having placed 


two hundred horse in ambush on the road by 
which he was to pass. The Araucanian general, 
although unexpectedly attacked by them, de- 
fended himself with such presence of mind, that 
he not only escaped without loss, but cut in pieces 
a great part of his assailants, and pursued the 
rest to the gates of Imperial, which he girt with 
a close siege. 

In the meantime Reynoso and Millalauco, who 
had several times encountered each other in skir- 
mishes, agreed to terminate the question of su- 
periority between them by single combat. Such 
duels had become very common during that war. 
The two champions fought a long time without 
either obtaining the advantage, till, wearied and 
fatigued, they separated by mutual consent, and 
returned to their former mode of warfare. 

The siege of Imperial was prosecuted with 
much vigour. Caupolican had made several 
assaults upon that city, flattering himself with 
the aid of the Spanish auxiliaries, which, un- 
cautioned by the misfortunes of his father, he 
had solicited by means of two of his officers., 
Tulcomaru and Torquin. These emissaries were, 
however, discovered and impaled in sight of the 
Araucanian army, to whom they recommended 
with their last breath to die in defence of the 
liberties of their country. 

One hundred and twenty of the auxiliaries 
were also hung on the ramparts, exhorting the 


others to favour the enterprise of their country- 

The Araucanian general, desirous of signal- 
izing himself by the capture of a place which 
his father had twice vainly attempted, made ano- 
ther assault still more violent than the preceding, 
in which his life was exposed to the most immi- 
nent danger. Several times in person did he 
scale the wall, and even effected at night an en- 
trance into the city, followed by Tucapel and a 
number of brave companions ; but repulsed by 
Bon Garcia, whose vigilance was present every 
where, he withdrew, constantly fighting, and 
covered with the blood of his enemies, to a bas- 
tion, from whence, by a vigorous leap, he re- 
joined his troops, who were very apprehensive 
for the safety of their beloved commander. 
Wearied at length with the prosecution of a 
siege whose operations were too slow for his im- 
patience, he resolved to abandon it, and employ 
his arms against Reynoso, in hopes to revenge 
the death of his father, but Don Garcia, having 
joined that officer, rendered all his attempts 

The campaign of the following year, 1559, 
was rendered still more memorable by the nu- 
merous battles that were fought between the 
two armies ; hot as these produced no material 
change in the state of affairs, it will not be ne- 
cessary to give a particular account of them, 


Notwithstanding several of these encounters were 
favourable to the Araucanians, Caupolican re- 
solved to protract the war, seeing that the number 
of his troops was daily diminished from their 
being continually exposed to the fire-arms of their 
enemies, while, on the contrary, the Spaniards 
were constantly receiving recruits from Peru 
and from Europe. With this intention he for- 
tified himself between the cities of Canete and 
Conception, in a place called Quipeo or Cuyapu, 
which was capable of being defended by a few 
men against any number of enemies unprovided 
with artillery. 

Don Garcia, on being informed of this mea- 
sure, marched thither immediately with all his 
troops in order to dislodge him, but observing 
the nature of the place, he delayed several days 
making a general attack, in hopes of being able 
to draw him from his position, that his cavalry 
might be enabled to act with more advantage? 
In the meantime frequent skirmishes took place 
between the parties. In one of these, the cele- 
brated Millalauco was made prisoner, who, re- 
gardless of his situation, reproached the Spanish 
general so severely with his cruel manner of 
making war, that, inflamed with the most vio- 
lent passion, he ordered him instantly to be im- 

During the siege the traitor Andrew had the 
temerity to go, by order of Don Garcia, to Cau- 


polican, and threaten him with the most dreadful 
punishment if he did not immediately submit to 
the royal authority. The Araucanian, who was 
extremely enraged at the sight of the betrayer of 
his father, ordered him to retire immediately, 
telling him that were it not for the character of 
an ambassador with which he was invested, he 
would put him to death with the most cruel tor- 
tures. The following day, however, that traitor 
being taken as a spy, was suspended by his feet; 
from a tree and suffocated with smoke. 

Don Garcia at length commenced his attack 
upon the Araucanian encampment, by a violent 
cannonade from all his artillery. Caupolican, 
instigated by his soldiers, who were eager to 
make a vigorous sally, fell with such fury upon 
the Spaniards, that, at the first charge, the 
Araucanians killed about forty, and continued 
slaughtering them until, by a skillful evolution, 
the Spanish general cut off their retreat, and sur- 
rounded them upon all sides. Caupolican, never- 
theless, valiantly seconded by his intrepid band, 
for the space of six hours rendered the issue of 
the battle doubtful, till, seeing Tucapel, Colo- 
colo, Renco, Lincoyan, Mariantu, Ongolmo, and 
several others of his most valiant officers slain, 
he attempted to retreat with the small remnant of 
his army, but being overtaken by a detachment 
of horse, slew himself to avoid the melancholy 
fate of his father, 

o 4 


Although the events that afterwards occurred 
had convinced Don Garcia that he had deceived 
himself in supposing, that the spirit of the Aran- 
canians was entirely broken after the dreadful 
massacre at Canete, he however on this occasion 
thought he Had good reason to believe the war 
wholly at an end. The battle of Quipeo ap- 
peared to him decisive in every point of view ; 
the principal officers who supported the courage 
of the enemy had all perished on that fatal day; 
their nation was without chiefs and without 
troops, and appeared to be submissive to the will 
of the conquerors. Under the influence of these 
flattering ideas, he devoted his whole attention 
to repair the losses occasioned by the war ; he 
rebuilt the fortifications that had been destroyed, 
particularly those of Arauco and of Angol ; he 
restored Yillarica, and re-established its inha- 
bitants : the mines that had been abandoned he 
caused to be opened anew, and others to be ex- 
plored; and obtained the establishment of a 
bishopric in the capital, whither he went himself 
to receive the first bishop, Fernando Barrio- 
nuevo, a monk of the Franciscan order. 

Finding himself provided with a good number 
of veteran troops, he sent a part of them, under 
the command of Pedro Castillo, to complete the 
conquest of Cujo, which bad been commenced 
by Francis De Aguirre. That prudent officer 
subjected the Guarpes, the ancient inhabitants of 


that province, to the Spanish government, and 
founded on the eastern limits of the Andes two 
cities, one of which he called St. Juan, and the 
other Mendoza, from the family name of the 
governor. This extensive and fertile country 
remained for a considerable time under the go- 
vernment of Chili, but has since been transferred 
to the viceroyalty of Buenos Ayres, to which, 
from its natural situation, it appertains. 

Whilst in this manner Don Garcia took ad- 
vantage of the apparent calm that prevailed in 
the country, he heard of the arrival at Buenos 
Ayres of the person appointed his successor by 
the court of Spain. In consequence of this in- 
formation, he immediately quitted the kingdom, 
confiding the government for the present to Ro- 
drigo de Quiroga, and returned to Peru, where, 
as a reward for his services, he was promoted to 
the exalted station which his father had filled. 







The Toqui Antiguenu recommences the War; 
His Successes against Francis Villagran, the 
Governor; Destruction of Canete; Sieges of 
Arauco and of Conception; Battle of the 

THE governor appointed in place of Don 
Garcia was his predecessor, Francis Villagran, 
who having gone to Europe after he had been 
deprived of the government, procured his rein- 
statement therein from the court of Spain. On 
his arrival at Chili, supposing from the infor- 
mation of Don Garcia and Quiroga that nothing 
more was necessary to be done with the Arauca- 
nians, and that they were in no condition to give 
him trouble, Villagran turned his attention to 



the re-acquisition of the province of Tueuman, 
which, after having been by him, in 1549, sub- 
jected to the government of Chili, had been since 
attached to the viceroyalty of Peru. Gregori 
Castaneda, who had the charge of this enter- 
prise, defeated the Peruvian commander, Juan 
Zurita, the author of the dismemberment, and 
restored the country to the obedience of the cap- 
tains general of Chili; it was, however, retained 
under their government but a short time, as they , 
were obliged by the court of Spain, before the 
close of the century, to cede it again to the go- 
vernment of Peru. 

But neither Don Garcia nor Quiroga, not- 
withstanding the long time they had fought in 
Chili, had formed a correct opinion of the temper 
of the people whom they pretended they had con- 
quered. The invincible Araucanian cannot be 
made to submit to the bitterest reverses of for- 
tune. His losses themselves, so far from deject- 
ing or dismaying him, appear to inspire him with 
more strength and valour. This constancy, or 
obstinacy as some may term it, is certainly won- 
derful, if not heroic. The few Ulmenes who 
had escaped from the late defeats, more than ever 
determined to continue the war, assembled im- 
mediately after the rout of Quiepo in a wood, 
where they unanimously elected as Toqui an 
officer of inferior rank, called Antiguenu, who 
had signalized himself in the last battle. He 


readily accepted the command, but represented 
to the electors, that as almost all the youth of 
the country had perished, he thought it expe- 
dient for then to retire to some secure situation,, 
until an army could be collected of sufficient 
strength to keep tbe field. This prudent advice 
was approved by all. Antiguenu retired with 
the few soldiers that he had with him to the in- 
accessible marshes of Luniaco, called by the 
Spaniards the Rochela, where he caused high 
scaffolds to be erected to secure his men from the 
extreme moisture of this gloomy retreat. The 
youth who were from time to time enlisted went 
thither to be instructed in the science of arms,, 
and the Araucanians still considered themselves 
free since they had a ToquL 

As soon as Antiguenu saw himself in a situ- 
ation to make himself feared, he quitted his re- 
treat, and began to make incursions into the Spa- 
nish territory, in order to practice his troops, and 
subsist them at the expense of the enemy. When 
this unexpected information reached St. Jago, it 
caused great inquietude to Villagran, who, from 
his long experience of the daring spirit of the 
Araucanians, foresaw all the fatal consequences 
that might result from this war. But in order, 
if possible, to stifle the bursting flame at its com- 
mencement, he sent forward immediately his 
son Pedro, with as many troops as could be 
raised in so short a time s and soon after set out 


upon the march himself with a much greater 

The first skirmishes between the armies were by 
no means favourable to Antiguenu, and his siege 
of Canete was attended with no better success. 
As he, however, attributed his failure to the in- 
experience of his men, he sought on every oc- 
casion to accustom them to the use of arms. At 
length, upon the hills of Millapoa, he had the 
satisfaction of showing them that they could 
conquer, by defeating a body of Spaniards com- 
manded by Arias Pardo. 

To keep up and increase the ardour which this 
success had excited in the minds of his soldiers, 
Antiguenu stationed himself upon the top of 
Mount Manguenu, a place of fortunate omen for 
his country. Villagran, who was either too much 
indisposed with the gout to assume the command 
himself, or was averse to hazard the attack of a 
place that had proved so unfortunate to him, gave 
in charge to one of his sons to dislodge the enemy 
from that dangerous post. This rash and en- 
terprising young man attacked the Araucanian 
entrenchments with so little precaution, that al- 
most all his army, consisting of the flower of the 
Spanish troops, and a great number of auxiliaries, 
were cut in pieces, and he himself was killed at 
the entrance of the enemy's encampment. 

After this signal victory, Antiguenu marched 
against Canete, rightly judging that in the pre- 


sent circumstances it would be unable to resist 
him ; but Villagran, who was likewise convinced 
of the impossibility of defending it, anticipated 
him bj withdrawing all the inhabitants, part of 
whom retired to Imperial, and part to Concep- 
tion. On their arrival, the Araucanians, who 
had experienced so many disasters in the vicinity 
of this place, had no other trouble than that of 
destroying the fortifications and setting it on fire, 
and hra short time it was entirely consumed. 

In the meantime Villagran, more the victim of 
grief and mental anxiety than of his disorder, 
died, universally regretted by the colonists, who 
lost in him a wise, humane, and valiant com- 
mander, to whose prudent conduct they were in- 
debted for the preservation of their conquests. 
Before his death he appointed as his successor, 
by a special commission from the court, his eldest 
son Pedro, whose mental endowments were no 
way inferior to his father's. 

The death of the governor appeared to Anti- 
guenu to present a favourable opportunity to 
undertake some important enterprise. Having 
formed his army, which consisted of 4,000 men, 
into two divisions, he ordered one, under the 
command of his Vice To qui Antunecul, to lay 
siege to Conception, in order to attract thither 
the attention of the Spaniards, while with the 
other he marched against the fort of Arauco, 
which was defended by a strong garrison, under 




the command of Lorenzo Bernal. Antunecul 
passed the Bio-bio, and encamped in a place 
called Leokethal, where he was twice attacked 
hy the governor, but he not only made a vigorous 
defence, but repulsed him with loss, and fol- 
lowed him to the city, which he closely invested 
by disposing his troops in six divisions around it. 
The siege was continued for two months, every 
day of which was distinguished bv some gallant 
assault. But finding all his attempts fruitless, 
as he could not prevent the frequent succours 
that were sent by sea to the besieged, he finally 
withdrew, resolving to return and prosecute the 
emerprise at a more favourable time. 

In the meantime the defence of Arauco was 
maintained with the greatest vigour. As Anti- 
gnenu had observed that whenever he attacked 
the place, his bravest officers were pointed out to 
the Spaniards by their Indian auxiliaries, and 
made the mark of the artillery, he resolved to 
take a severe vengeance upon them. For this 
purpose he contrived by bis emissaries to in- 
form the Spanish commander that the auxiliaries 
were intriguing to deliver up the fort to the 
Araucahians. Bernal gave such credit to this 
false report, that in a transport of fury he im- 
mediately ordered those unfortunate men to quit 
the place, notwithstanding their entreaties and 
remonstrances. This was the sole object of the 
Araucanian chieftain, who immediately had them 

4 , 


seized and put to a cruel death in sight -of the 
Spaniards, who were extremely exasperated in 
finding themselves so grossly imposed on by a 

As the siege was protracted to a considerable 
length, Antiguenu became impatient, and wished 
to bring it to a conclusion, if possible, by the 
death of the governor ; with this view he chal- 
lenged him to single combat. Notwithstanding 
the remonstrances of his soldiers, Bernal, who 
deemed himself secure of the victory, accepted 
the challenge. The battle between these two 
champions was continued for two hours without 
either obtaining any advantage or injuring the 
other, till they were at length separated by their 
men. But what force had not been able to 
effect, was performed by famine. Several boats 
loaded with provisions had repeatedly attempted 
in vain to relieve the besieged ; the vigilance of 
the besiegers opposed so insuperable an obstacle, 
that Bernal saw himself at length compelled io 
abandon the place. The Araucanians permitted 
the garrison to retire without molestation, and 
contented themselves with burning the houses 
and demolishing the walls. 

The capture of Angol, after that of Canete 
and Arauco, appeared so easy to AntiVuenu, that 
•he gave it in charge to one of his subalterns. 
That officer meeting on the road with a body of 
Spaniards commanded by Zurita, defeated them, 

VOL. If. P " 

but was afterwards Touted in his turttnear Mul» 
ehen by Diego Carranza, whom the magistracy 
of that city had sent against Iiitti. Antiguenu, 
solicitous of maintaining the reputation of his 
arms, repaired thither in person with about two 5 
thousand men, in order to finish the enterprise ; 
but before assaulting the place he encamped at 
the confluence of the Bio-bio and Vergosa, 
where foe was attacked by the whole Spanish 
arm j, under the command of Bernal. The 
Araucanians made use with much skill of the' 
muskets which they had taken at the defeat of 
Mariguenu, and sustained the assault for three 
Iiours in succession. Four hundred of the auxi- 
liaries and a immber of Spaniards had fallen, 
when their infantry began to give way and be- 
take themselves to flight. Bernal, perceiving n$* 
other means of restraining them, commanded the 
horse to slay the fugitives. This severe order 
was carried into exec ution, and checked the con- 
fusion. The infantry being thus compelled to- 
fight, attacked the enemy's entrenchments with- 
such vigour, that they finally forced them and 
penetrated into the camp, Antigucnu valiantly 
opposed the assailants in person, but, forced along 
with a crowd of his soldiers who tied, he fell 
from a high bank into the river, and was drowned* 
His death decided the battle. Great was the 
slaughter of the Araucanians. Many also pe- 
rishecl in the river, into which they had thrown--- 



themselves to escape. In this tattle,, which was 
fought in 1564, the Conquerors themselves were 
almost all wounded., and lost many of their men, 
hut recovered forty-one muskets, twenty-one 
cuirasses, and fifteen helmets, with a, great 
number of lances and other weapons. 

While these events passed on the shore of the 
Bio-bio, Lillemu, who had been sent by Anti- 
guenu to lay waste the provinces of Chilian and 
Itata, defeated a detachment of eighty Spaniards, 
commanded by Pedro Balsa. In the meantime 
ihe governor, leaving Conception with one hun- 
dred and fifty soldiers, cut off a party of the 
Araucaniaiis that were rava^injr Chilian. Lil- 
lerriu hastened to their relief, but on his arrival, 
finding them dispersed, he only saved the re- 
mainder of his troops by making a gallant stand 
in a narrow pass with several determined youth. 
This noble effort of patriotic courage gave time 
to his army to effect their escape, but it cost the 
lives of Lillemu and his Valiant companions. 





Paillataru elected To qui / Government of Ro- 
drigo de Quiroga ; Conquest of the Archipelago 
of Chiloe ; Description of its Inhabitants. 

Antiguenu had for successor in the Toquiate, 
Paillataru, the brother or cousin of the celebrated 
Lautaro, but his character was of a very different 
stamp. Slow and extremely circumspect in his 
operations, he contented himself during the first 
years of his command in maintaining undimi- 
nished the love of liberty in the bosoms of bis 
countrymen, and in leading them from time to 
time to ravage the enemy's country. During 
the same time a change was made of the Spanish 
governor : Rodrigo de Quiroga, who had been 
appointed to that office by the Royal Audience 
of Lima, began his administration by arresting 
his predecessor, and sending him prisoner to 

Having received a reinforcement of three hun- 
dred soldiers in 1665, he entered the Araucaniari 
territory, rebuilt the fort of Arauco and the city 
of Canete, constructed anew fortress at the cele- 
brated post of QutpeOj and ravaged the neigh- 
bouring provinces. Towards the end of the fol- 


lowing year he sent the Marshal Ruiz Gamboa 
with sixty men to subject the inhabitants of the 
Archipelago of Chiloe ; that officer encountered 
no resistance,, and founded in the principal island 
the city of Castro and the port of Chacao. 

The islands of this Archipelago amount to 
eighty,, and, like most other islands, have been 
produced by earthquakes, owing to the great 
number of volcanoes with which that country 
formerly abounded. Every part of them ex- 
hibits the most unquestionable marks of fire. 
Several mountains in the great island of Chiloe^ 
which has given its name to the Archipelago, are 
composed of basaltic columns, which, whatever 
may be said to the contrary, could have been 
produced only by the operation of fire. 

The native inhabitants, though descended from 
the continental Chilians, as their appearance, 
their manners, and their language all evince, are 
nevertheless of a very different character, being 
of a pacific or rather a timid disposition. They 
made no opposition, as we have already observed, 
to the handful of Spaniards who came there to 
subjugate them, although their population is 
said to have exceeded seventy thousand; nor 
have they ever attempted to shake off the yoke 
until the beginning of the present century, when 
an insurrection of no great importance was ex- 
cited, which was soon quelled. The number of 
inhabitants at present amounts to upwards oi 

Bra I 


eleven thousand ; they are divided into seventy** 
six districts or Ulmenates, the greater part of 
which are subject to the Spanish commanders, 
and are, obliged to render personal service for 
fifty days in the year, according to the feudal 
laws, which are rigidly observed in this province, 
notwithstanding they have been for a long time 
abolished throughout the rest of the kingdom. 

These islanders generally possess a quickness 
of capacity, and very readily learn whatever is 
taught them. They have a genius for the me- 
chanical arts, and excel in carpentery, cabinet- 
making, and turnery, from the frequent occa^ 
sions which they have to exercise them, all their 
churches and houses being built of wood. They 
are very good manufacturers of linen and wool- 
len, with which they mix the feathers of sea- 
birds, and form beautiful coverings for their 
beds. They make also ponchos, or cloaks of 
various kinds, striped or embroidered with silk 
or thread. From their swine, which are very 
numerous, they make excellent hams, the most 
esteemed of any in South America. 

Notwithstanding the great quantity of timber 
annually taken from them, these islands are co- 
vered with thick woods ; and as it rains there 
almost incessantly, the cultivated grounds con- 
tinue wet the whole year. From hence it fol- 
lows that the inhabitants, although they have 
cattle, make no use of them for ploughing, but 


till the earth in a very singular manner. About 
three months before sowing-time they turn their 
sheep upon their lands, changing their situation 
every three or four nights. When the field is 
sufficiently manured in this manner they strew 
the grain oyer it. One of their strongest mea 
then attempts to harrow it by means of a machine 
formed of two large sticks of hard wood made 
sharp and fastened together, which he forces into 
the ground with his breast, and thus covers the 
seed. Notwithstanding this imperfect tillage, a 
crop of wheat will yield them ten or twelve for 
one. They also raise great quantities of barley, 
beans, peas, quinoa, and potatoes, which are the 
largest and best of any in Chili. From the ex- 
cessive moisture of the atmosphere, the grape 
never acquires sufficient maturity to be iiiade 
into wine, but its want is supplied by various 
Ikinds of cider, obtained from apples and other 
wild fruits of the country. 

The necessity that they are under of often 
going from one island to another, where the sea 
is far from deserving the name of the Pacific, 
renders the Chilotes excellent sailors. Their 
pira^ues are composed of three or five large 
planks sewed together, and caulked with a 
species of moss that grows on a shrub. These 
are in great numbers throughout the whole of 
the Archipelago, and are managed with sails 



216 » 

and oars, and in these frail skiffs the natives will 
frequently venture as far as Conception.* 

These people are fond of fishing, an occu- 
pation to which they are led from the great va- 
riety of fish with which their coasts abound. 
Large quantities of these are dried and sent to 
foreign countries. They likewise dry the testa- 
ceous kinds, particularly the conchs, the clamps, 
and the piures. For this purpose they arrange 
them in a long trench, covering them with the 
large leaves of thepanke tinctoria. Over these 
they place stones, on which they make a hot fire 
for several hours. They then take the roasted 
animals from their shells, and string them upon 
threads, which they hang for some time in the 
smoke. In this mode they keep very well, and 
are carried to Cujo and other places at a distance 
from the sea. 

As soon as the Christian religion was preached 
in Chiloe, it was readily embraced by the natives, 
who have ever since continued faithful and obe- 
dient to its precepts. Their spiritual concerns 
are under the direction of the bishop of Concep- 
tion, and their temporal are administered by a 
governor appointed by the captain-general of 

* It will not be improper to observe here, that the Indians, 
^vho form the principal part of the sailors of the South Seas, 
are very active, docile, and industrious, and excellent seamen 
tor these mild and temperate climates.— Spanish Trans. 


Chili.* The Spaniards at present established in 
this Archipelago amount to about fifteen thou- 
sand, and its commerce is conducted by means of 
three or four ships which trade there annually 
from Peru and Chili. To these they sell large 
quantities of red cedar boards, timber of different 
kinds suitable for carriages, upwards of two 
thousand ponchos of various qualities, hams, pil- 
ch ards^dried shell-fish, white cedar boxes, cloaks, 
embroidered girdles, and a small quantity of am- 
bergris which is found upon the shores; and 
receive in exchange, wine, brandy, tobacco, sugar, 
herb of Paraguay, salt, and several kinds of 
Buropean f goods. 

* The temporal government of these islands at the present 
time (1792) is vested in the viceroyalty of Lima. — Spanish 


t For a farther account of the Archipelago of Chiloe, see 
Ifee Appendix, — E. E, 



CHAP. in. 

Establishment of the Court of Royal Audiences 
Government of Don Melchor Bravo de Sara- 
via ; Military operation of Paillataru, and of 
Ms successor Paynenancu ; Suppression of the 
Court of Audience? Second Government of 
Quiroga; Foundation of Chilian; Some Ac- 
count of the Pehuenches a 

The continuation of the war, and the great 
importance of the conquest, finally induced 
Philip II. to erect a court of Royal Audience in 
Chili, independent of that of Peru. To this he 
confided not only the political, but even the mili- 
tary administration of that kingdom. This su- 
preme tribunal, which was composed of four 
judges of law, and a fiscal, on the 1 3th of August, 
1567, made its solemn entry into Conception, 
where it fixed its residence. Immediately on 
assuming its functions, it removed Quiroga from 
the government, and gave the command of the 
army with the title of general to Ruiz Gamboa, 
This commander, having learned that Pailla- 
iaru was preparing to besiege the city of Canete, 
hastened thither immediately, and finding him in 
possession of a post not far from that place, at- 


lacked and defeated him after a long and obstinate 
contest. This defeat enabled the victors to over- 
run and lay waste the country, without opposition, 
for the space of a year, from whence they took 
a great number of women and children, whom 
they made slaves. In the meantime the Spanish 
general attempted repeatedly, to no purpose, to 
persuade the Araucanians to commence negocia- 
lions for peace. Preferring all possible evils to 
the loss pf liberty, they constantly refused to 
Jend an, ear tq his proposals. 

As peace, so necessary to the welfare of the 
colony, appeared to be daily more remote, not- 
withstanding no means were spared to obtain it, 
the military government of the Royal Audience 
was thought inadequate to the purpose of its 
establishment; and it was deemed more expedient 
to place it, as before, in the hands of a single 
chief, distinguished by the new titles of president, 
governor, and captain-general of Chili, from his 
being president of the Royal Audience, the head 
of the civil department, and commander of the 
primes, pon Melchor de Bravo was, in 1568, 
Invested with this triple character ; a man well 
qualified to §\] the two first offices, but utterly 
incompetent to sustain the latter. 

He was nevertheless very desirous of engaging 
the enemy, and signalizing the commencement of 
his government by a splendid victory. Having 
learned that Paillataru, who had collected a new 


army, had occupied the fatal height of Mari* 
guenu, which the Spaniards, for what reason I 
know not, had never thought of fortifying, he 
immediately marched against him at the head of 
three hundred European soldiers, and a large 
number of auxiliaries. Paillataru, like several 
of his predecessors, had the glory of rendering 
this mountain famous by the total defeat of the 
Spanish army. The president, who very fortu- 
nately escaped being made prisoner, withdrew 
precipitately with the small remnant of his troops 
to the city of Angol. Greatly intimidated by his 
defeat, he there resigned the command of the 
army to Gamboa, the marshal, and to the quarter- 
master Velasco, whom he ordered immediately 
to evacuate the so often destroyed and rebuilt 
fortress of Arauco. These officers, while con- 
ducting the inhabitants of that place to Canete, 
fell in with a division of the enemy, which they 
attacked and defeated. Nevertheless, Paillataru, 
having taken the post of Qoipeo, marched t\io 
days after against that city with a determination 
to blockade it, when the marshal came out to 
meet him with all the troops that he could raise. 
The battle was continued for more than two 
hours, and was one of the bloodiest ever fought 
in Chili. The Spaniards, though severely han- 
dled, remained masters of the field ; but Pailla- 
taru, having in a short time repaired his losses, 
returned to oppose the marshal, who had entered 

the Araucanian territory to ravage it, and com- 
pelled him to retreat with loss. 

After this success, the two belligerent nations 
Observed, till the death of Paillataru, a period of 
about four years, a truce or suspension of arms, 
This was probably in a great measure owing to 
the general consternation caused by a dreadful 
earthquake, which was felt throughout the 
country, and did great injury to the Spanish 
settlements, particularly the city of Conception, 
which was entirely destro } .d. The Spaniards, 
ever attentive to consolidate and give importance 
to their conquests, erected, in 1570, another 
bishopric in the city of Imperial, to which they 
assigned as a diocese the vast extent of country 
lying between the river Maule and the southern 
confines of Chili. 

About this time the Mustees, or descendants 
of the Spaniards and Indians, having multiplied 
greatly, the Araucanians, perceiving the advan- 
tages which they might derive from their assist- 
ance, resolved to attach them to their cause, by 
letting them see that they considered them as 
their countrymen. With this view, on the death 
of Paillataru in 1574, they conferred the office 
Of Toqui on one of these men, called Alonzo 
Diaz, who had taken the Chilian name of Pay 
uenancu, and had for ten years fought in their 
armies, where he had distinguished himself uy 


iw valour and abilities. If his predecessor Lad 
the fault of being too cautious, the new to qui, 
on the contrary, to avoid that imputation, was 
sojrash and daring that he almost always attacked 
the Spaniards witfi troops inferior in number, 
whence all his enterprises had that result which 
might naturally have been expected. 

As soon as he was invested with the command 
he crossed the Bio-bio, probably with an in- 
iention of attacking Conception ; but before he 
reached it he was attacked and defeated in his 
entrenchments by the quarter-master Bernal, not- 
withstanding the great valour with which he de- 
fended himself for a long time. Among the pri- 
soners taken upon this occasion were several 
women who were found in arms, the greater 
part of whom killed themselves the same night. 
Paynenancu, having escaped from the carnage' 
marched against Villarica, but was again de- 
feated by Rodrigo Bastidas, the commandant of 
that city. 

: Whilst the war was thus enkindled anew, the 
licentiate Calderon arriyed at Chili, in 1575, 
with a commission from the court of Spain as 
examiner. His first step was to suppress the 
tribunal of audience, on the sole principle of 
economy. The auditors themselves Were ordered 
back to Peru, and instead of the president Sara- 
bia, Rodrigo Quiroga, who but a few years be- 


fore had been appointed governor fry the Audi- 
ence of Lima, was again reinstated in that office 
by order of Philip II. 

That experienced officer, having assembled alt 
the troops that he could raise in the present cir- 
cumstances, proceeded in 1576 to the frontiers to 
oppose the progress of Paynenancu, who, not- 
withstanding he had been twice defeated, con- 
tinued constantly to harass the Spanish settle- 
ments; but not being able to meet him, he con- 
tented himself with ravaging the country. 

In the meantime, having received a reinforce- 
ment of two thousand men from Spain, he gave 
directions to his father-in-law, Ruiz Gamboa, to 
found a new colony at the foot of the Cordilleras, 
between the cities of Santiago and Conception, 
which has since received the appellation of Chil- 
ian, from the river on whose shore it stands, and 
has become the capital of the fertile province of 
that name. Shortly after the establishment of 
this settlement, in 1580, the governor died at a 
very advanced age, having nominated Gamboa 
as his successor. The three years of Gamboa's 
government wereoccupied on one side in opposing 
the attempts of Paynenancu, and on the other in 
repelling the Pehuenches and Chiquillanians, 
who, instigated by the Araucanians, had begun 
to molest the Spanish settlements. 

The Pehuenches form a numerous tribe, and 
inhabit that part of the Chilian Andes lying be- 



Iween the 34th and 37th degrees of south lati- 
tude, to the east of the Spanish provinces of 
Calchagua, Maule, Chilian, and Huilquilemu. 
Their dress is no way different from that of the 
Araucanians, except that instead of drawers or 
breeches, they wear around the waist a piece of 
cloth like the Japanese, which falls down to the 
fcnees. Their boots, or shoes, are all of one 
piece, and made from the skin of the hind leg of 
an ox taken off at the knee; this they fit to "the 
foot while green, turning the hair within, and 
sewing up one of the ends, the skin of the knee 
serving for the heel. These shoes, by being 
worn and often rubbed with tallow, become at 
soft and pliable as the best dressed leather. 

Although these mountaineers have occasion- 
ally shown themselves to be valiant and hardy 
soldiers, they are nevertheless fond of adorning 
and decorating themselves like women. Thev 
wear ear-rings and bracelets of glass beads upon 
their arms ; they also ornament their hair with 
the same, and suspend little bells around their 
heads. Notwithstanding they have numerous 
herds of cattle and sheep, their usual food is 
horse-flesh, which, like the Tartars, they prefer 
io any other, but more delicate than that people, 
they eat it only when boiled or roasted. 

They dwell in the manner of the Bedouin 
Arabs, in tents made of skins, disposed in a cir- 
cular form, leaving in the centre a spacious field, 


where their cattle feed during the continuance of 
the herbage. When that begins to fail they 
transport their habitations to another situation, 
and in this manner, continually changing place, 
they traverse the valleys of the Cordilleras. This 
wandering life is not, however, without its plea- 
sures : by this means they acquire new acquaint- 
ances, new accommodations, and new prospects. 

Each village or encampment is governed by an 
Ulmen, or hereditary prince. In their language 
and religion they differ not from the Araucanians. 
They are fond of hunting, and often, in pursuit 
of game, traverse the immense plains that lie 
between the great river of Plata and the straits 
of Magellan. These excursions they sometimes 
extend as far as Buenos Ayres, and plunder the 
country in the vicinity. They frequently attack 
the caravans of merchandize going from thence, 
to Chili, and so successful have they been in 
their enterprises, that at present, owing to that 
cause, the commerce in that quarter is said to be 
almost entirely stopped.* 

* It may be here proper to relate what I myself noticed on 
ray passage through these districts. On the 27th of April, 
1783, I left Mendoza with post-horses for Buenos Ayres. We 
soon learned from some people whom we met, that the Pe- 
huenches were out on their excursions; and we soon after re* 
ceived the melancholy information of the massacres they had 
committed in the Portion of Magdalena. In consequenee of 
this there was not a post-house where we stopped but was in a 


They have, nevertheless, for many years^ ab- 
stained from committing hostilities within the 
Chilian boundaries in time of peace, induced 
either by the advantages which they derive from 
the trade with the inhabitants, or from the fear 
of being roughly handled by them. Their fa- 
vourite weapon is the laque, already described, 
which they always carry with them fastened to 
their girdles. It is very probale that the ten 
Americans conducted by the valiant Orellana, of 
whose amazing courage mention is made in Lord 
Anson's Voyage, were of this tribe. 

Notwithstanding their wandering and restless 

state of alarm, and we came to some that were absolutely de°> 
serted through fear. The year before about three hundred 
Indians, lying back upon their horses, trailing their lances be- 
Mild them, in order to have it supposed that it was one of those 
droves of mares so common in those Pampas, appeared all at 
once before the post of Gutierrez ; but, supposing it strongly 
guarded, were deterred from attacking it, although they saw- 
but one man, who patroled the wall with his musket, and was 
indeed the only person in it. This man knew well that the 
horses were guided, by the order and coifrse they pursued, al- 
though he could see nothing of their riders till they had come 
very near. He had the prudence, however, not to fire at 
them, which probably led them to believe there was a greater 
force within the place, and induced them to abandon the en- 
terprise and vent their fury upon the unfortunate inhabitants of 
those plains. The commander of the post of Amatrain was 
joot so fortunate ; he was killed the same year with a negro 
who attended him . These posts are fortified with palisades s 
or with a mud wall, and have a ditch and a draw-bridge,, 


disposition, these people are the most industrious 
and commercial of any of the savages. When 
in their tents they are never idle. The women 
weave cloths of various colours ; the men occupy 
themselves in making baskets and a variety of 
beautiful articles of wood, feathers, or skins; 
which are highly prized hj their neighbours. 
They assemble every year on the Spanish frontier/ 
where they hold a kind of fair that ususally 
continues for fifteen or twenty days. Hither 
they bring fossil salt, gypsum, pitch, bed-cover- 
ings, ponchos, skins, wool, bridle-reins beau- 
tifully wrought of plaited leather, baskets, 
wooden vessels, feathers, ostrich eggs, horses^ 
cattle, and a variety of other articles ; and re- 
ceive in exchange, wheat, wine, and the manu- 
factures of Europe. They are very skillful in 
traffic, and can with difficulty be overreached. 
For fear of being plundered by those who be- 
lieve that any thing is lawful against infidels, 
they never all drink at the same time, but sepa- 
rate themselves into several companies, and while 
some keep guard the others indulge themselves 
in the pleasures of wine. They are generally 
humane, complacent, lovers of justice, and 
possess all those good qualities that are produced 
or perfected by commerce. 

The Chiquillanians, whom some have erro- 
neously supposed to be apart of the Pehuenches, 
live to the north-east of them, on the eastern 



borders of the Andes. These are the most sa- 
vage, and, of course, the least numerous of any 
of the Chilians, for it k an established fact that 
the ruder the state of savage life, the more iir~ 
favourable is it to population. They go almost 
naked, merely wrapping- around them the skin of 
the guanco,* It is observable that all the Chi- 
lians who inhabit the eastern valleys of the 
Andes, both the Pehuenches, the Puelches, and 
the Huilliches, as well as the Chiquillanians, are 
much redder than those of their countrymen who 
$well to the westward of that mountain. All 
these mountaineers dress themselves in skins, 
paint their faces, live in general by hunting, and 
lead a wandering and unsettled life. They are 
no other, as I have hitherto observed, than the 
$o much celebrated.. Pataganians, who have oc- 
casionally been seen near the straits of Magellan, 
and ha-ve been at one time described as ffiants, 
and at another as men a little above the common 
stature. It is true, however, that they are, ge- 
nerally speaking, of a lofty stature and great 

* The anonymous account of Chili published at Bologna 
hi speaking of this nation, observes, that their language is gut! 
tural, and a very corrupt jargon of the Chilian, 



Government of the -Marquis dt Villar-lwrmosa ; 
His -Successes against Paynenancu .; Capture 
and Death of that General ; Enterprises of the 
To qui Cayancura and his Son Nangoniel ; 
Landing of the English in Chili ; Operations 
of the Toqui Cadegnala. 

As soon as information was received in Spain of 
the death of Quiroga, the king sent out as go- 
vernor to Chili, Don Alonzo Sctomayor, with six 
hundred regular troops, who, in 1583, landed at 
Buenos Ayres, and from thence proceeded to 
Santiago. He immediately sent his brother Don 
Louis, whom he appointed to the new office of 
colonel of the kingdom, to succour the cities of 
Villarica and Valdivia, which were hesieged by 
the Aiaucanians. That officer raised the sieges 
of those places after having twice defeated Pay- 
nenancu, who attempted to oppose his march. 
Notwithstanding these reverses the enterprising 
Toqui turned his arras against Tiburcio Heredia, 
and afttfwards against Antonio Galleguillos, 
who were- ravaging the country with a large 
body of dHalry ; by these he was likewise de- 
q 3 



feated, but the victors paid dearly for their 

In the meantime the governor, having driven 
off the Pehuenehes who infested the new settle- 
ment of Chilian, entered the Araucanian territory 
with seven hundred Spaniards, and a great number 
of auxiliaries, resolved to pursue the rigorous 
system of making war which had been adopted 
by Don Garcia, in preference to the mild and 
humane policy of his immediate predecessors. 
The province of Eocol was the first that expe- 
rienced the effects of his severity. He laid it en- 
tirely waste with fire and sword. Those who were 
taken prisoners were either hung or sent away 
with their hands cut off, in order to intimidate 
their countrymen. The provinces of Puren> 
Ilicura, and Tucapel, would have shared the 
same fate, if the inhabitants had not secured 
themselves hy flight before the arrival of the 
enemy, after setting on fire their houses and 
their crops. In the last province they took only 
three of the inhabitants prisoners, who were im- 
paled. Notwithstanding these severities, a num- 
ber of mustees and mulatioes joined the Arauca- 
nians, and even some Spaniards, among whom 
was Juan Sanchez,, who acquired great repu- 

The Araucanian general, impelled either bv 
his natural audacity, or by despair, on finding 
himself fallen in the estimation of the native in- 


habitants, opposed on the confines of the pro- 
vince of Arauco the whole Spanish army with 
only eight hundred men. They nevertheless 
fought with such resolution that the Spaniards 
were not ahle to break theni till after an ob- 
stinate contest of several hours, in which they 
lost a considerable number of men. Almost all 
the Araucanians were slain, Paynenancu himself 
was taken prisoner, and immediately executed. 
The victorious governor then rebuilt the fortress 
of Arauco, appointing the quarter-master Garcia 
liamon to command it, and encamped on the 
shore of the river Carampangui. 

The Araucanian valour, which had been de- 
pressed by the imprudent conduct of the mustee 
general, was excited anew by the elevation to 
that dignity, in 1585, of Cayancaru, one of their 
own countrymen, an Ulmen of the district of 
Mariguenu. One hundred and fifty messengers, 
furnished with symbolical arrows, were imme- 
diately dispatched to various quarters in search 
of aid. Every thing was put in motion, and in 
a short time a respectable army was assembled. 
The new Toqui determined to attack at mid- 
night the Spanish camp, which still occupied the 
post of Karampangui, of whose exact situation 
he w r as informed by means of a spy. For this 
purpose he formed his army into three divsions, 
and gave the command of them to thme valiant 
officers, Lonconobal, Antulevu, and Tarochina, 
q 4 


These divisions proceeded by three roads that 
led to the ca. p, and cut in pieces the ^.^ 
ancs, who were the first to oppose their pro- 
gress. Fortunately for the Spaniards, the moon 
™mg at the moment of the assault, enabled 
them after a short period of confusion, in 
which they lost several of their men, to form 
themselves and make head against their assaiU 
ants, who, galled upon all sides by the musketry 
began at length to give way. The governor ax 
the same time, charging them with his band of 
veterans, succeeded in repulsing them, though 
not without great loss on both sides. 

Cayancura, who had halted at the entrance of 
the Span „h camp, in order to support the attack, 
fending his troops retiring exhausted and fe- 
igned, permitted them to rest the remainder of 
the night, and at day-break returned to the at- 
tack. The Spaniards came out to meet them in 
the open Held, and most obstinate and bloody 
was the battle that ensued. But, overpowered 
by the horse and artillery, the Araucanians were 
finally compelled to quit the field. The authors 
whom I have consulted satisfy themselves with 
observing that the victory cost the Spaniards 
dear, without specifying the number of the slain 
The governor himself calls it a bloody one in his 
patent to Nugno Hernandez. The greatest proof 
of his loss is, that immediately after the action 
he raised his camp, and retired to the frontiers, 

■ 233- 

where he built two forts, that of Trinidad upon. 
the southern, and Spirito Santo upon" the northern 
shore of the Bio-bio, He also sent orders to the 
serjeant-major to raise as many recruits as pos- 
sible throughout the kingdom, who, in conse- 
quence, brought him two th. isand horse, and a 
considerable number of infantry. 

Notwithstanding his losses, the Araueanian 
general resolved to take advantage of the retreat 
of the governor to attack the fort of Arauco. 
In order to render more secure the success of the 
enterprise, 25 e endeavoured to divert the Spanish 
forces in every quarter. For this purpose he 
ordered Guepotan to make incursions in the 
territory of Villarica from the fort of Liben, 
where he had supported himself for several 
years. To Cadiguala, who was afterwards in- 
vested with the supreme command, he gave 
charge to harass the inhabitants of Angol ; and 
appointed Tarochina to guard the shores of the 
Bio-bio ; while Melilanca and Catipillan were 
sent against Imperial. .These officers had several 
encounters with the? Spaniards, attended with 
various success. Ggiepotan lost the fort of Li- 
ben, which was taken by the brother of the go- 
vernor, while Tarochina made himself master of 
a great number of boats on the Bio -bio, that 
were conducting supplies of men and warlike 
Stores to the forts newly erected upon that river. 

In 1586 Cayancura began his intended siege. 


by surrounding the place with strong lines, so as 
not only to intercept all succours, but also to 
prevent the retreat of the garrison. From these 
preparations the besieged perceiving that they 
must finally be compelled to surrender or perish 
with hunger, thought it better to die with arms 
in their hands than to be reduced to this ex- 
tremity; they therefore attacked the enemy's 
works with such rigour, that after a dreadful 
combat of about four hours, they forced them, 
and put the Araucanians to flight. Cayancura' 
extremely mortified at the ill-success of his en' 
ierprise, retired to his Ulmenate, leaving the 
command of the army to his son Nangoniel, a 
youth of great hopes, and much beloved by the 

The young commander immediately collected 
some companies of infantry, and a hundred and 
fifty horse, which from henceforward began to 
form a part of the Araucanian force, and re- 
turned to invest the same fortress, whose en- 
virons he so closely guarded, that the Spaniards, 
unable to procure a supply of provisions, were 
at length compelled to evacuate it Encouraged 
hy this good fortune, he proceeded against the 
fort of Trinidad which protected the passage of 
the enemy's supplies by the Bio-bio ; but having 
fallen in on the road with a division of Spanish 
troops, under the command of Francisco Her- 
nandez, he lost an arm in the contest, after bavins 


received several other dangerous wounds. Thi 
misfortune obliged him to retire to a neighbour- 
ing mountain, where he was drawn into an am- 
bush by the serjeant-major, and slain with fifty 
of his soldiers, notwithstanding the great valour 
with which they defended themselves for a long 
time. The same day Cadeguala, who had ob- 
tained great reputation in the army for his 
courage and military skill, was proclaimed To qui 
by his officers. 

Whilst the Araucanians endeavoured to oppose 
the progress of the Spaniards in their country, 
the English also planned an expedition against 
them in that remote quarter. On the 21st of 
July, 1586, Sir Thomas Cavendish sailed with 
three ships from Plymouth, and in the following 
year arrived on the coast of Chili. He landed 
in the desert port of Quintero, and endeavoured 
to enter into a negociation with the natives of the 
country. But his stay there was but of short 
continuance ; he was attacked by Alonzo Mo- 
lina, the Corregidor of Santiago, and compelled 
to quit the coast with the loss of several of his 
soldiers aifd seamen. 

In the meantime Cadeguala, who had sigiml- 
ized the beginning of his command by several 
bold incursions, resolved to avail himself of this 
timely diversion to surprise the city of Angol> 
with some of whose inhabitants he maintained a 
a secret intelligence. By means of these agents 


he prevailed upon those Chilians who were in the 
service of the Spaniards to set fire to the houses 
of their masters at. a certain hour of the night, 
when he would he ready with his army at the 
gates. The plan being accordingly executed, he 
entered the city amidst the confusion, occupied 
the several quarters of it with a thousand foot 
and a hundred horse, and began to make a dread- 
ful slaughter of the citizens, who, in nymg f rom 
the flames, fell into his hands. The garrison in 
vain attempted to oppose his progress; nor would 
any have escaped the sword on that fatal night, 
had not by good fortune the governor accidentally 
arrived there two hours before the attack. He 
immediately hastened at the head of his guard 
to the different places that were attacked, and 
with wonderful presence of mind collected the 
dispersed inhabitants, and conducted them to the 
citadel. From thence he sallied out with the 
most determined of them, and attacked the enemy, 
whom he obliged to retire at day-break. The 
Araucanians had become much less scrupulous 
than formerly in their mode of making war, for 
Cadeguala was not abandoned by any of his 
officers on this occasion, as Caupolican had been 
at Canete in his fraudful surprise of that city. 

Although this daring enterprise had not "been 
accompanied with the success which the Arau-' 
canian general expected, yet 3 far from being dis- 
couraged by it, he undertook the siege of the 


fortress of Puren, wliicli from its interior situation 
appeared more easy to be taken. He invested it 
regularly with four thousand men in four divi- 
sions, under the command of Guanaleoa, Caoio- 
taru, Relniuantu, and Curilemu, the most valiant 
officers of his army. The governor, on receiving 
information of the danger of the place, hastened 
to relieve it with a strong reinforcement, but 
Cadeguala advanced to meet him with a hundred 
and fifty lances, and opposed him with such 
vigour, that after along combat, in which several 
were killed, he compelled him. to retreat. 

Elated with this success, he proposed to the 
besieged, either to allow them to retire upon pa- 
role, or enter his service. These terms, which 
he pretended to consider as advantageous, were 
rejected with disdain. One person alone, called 
Juau Tapia, availed himself of the proffer, and 
went over to the Araucanians, by whom he was 
well received, anct advanced in their army. This 
plan proving abortive, Cadeguala determined to 
shorten the siege by a decisive blow. Re pre- 
sented himself before the walls on a superb horse 
which he had taken from the governor, and defied 
the commander of the place, Garcia Ramon, to 
single combat at the end of three days. The 
challenge being accepted, the intrepid To qui ap- 
peared at. the -time appointed in the field, with a 
small number'" of attendants, whom he placed 
§part. The Spanish commander came out to 



meet him with forty men, whom he likewise or- 
deied to remain at a distance. The two cham- 
p ns then putting spurs to their horses, .encoun- 
tered with such fury, that the first stroke decided 
the battle, Cadeguala falling to the ground, 
pierced through and through by the lance of his 
adversary; notwithstanding which, refusing to 
acknowledge himself vanquished, he endea- 
voured to remount his horse, but life failed him 
in the attempt. His soldiers ran to raise him 
and carried off the body, after a sharp contest 
with the Spaniards. The army then retired from 
the place, determined to return when they had 
elected a new chief 



The To qui Guano alca takes the Forts of Puren s 
Trinidad, and Spirito Santo ; Exploits of the 
Heroine Janequeo ; Battles of Mariguenu and 

The Araucanians soon returned to besiege the 
fort of Puren under their new Toqui Guanoalca, 
who, being informed by Tapia that the garrison 
was but ill supplied with provisions, and divided 
into two parties, had formed the most sanguine 
expectations of taking it. The result proved 
that he calculated correctly ; as the besieged, 
cut off from all external succour, and dissatisfied 
with the conduct of their officers, were not long 
in retiring to the city of Angol ; the Arauca- 
nians, with their usual policy, leaving the passage 
free, nor endeavouring to molest them in their 

Guanoalca immediately after marched against 
another fort which the Spaniards had a little be- 
fore constructed in the vicinity of Mount Mari- 
guenu ; but a considerable reinforcement having 
entered it shortly before, he resolved to employ 
his forces in another quarter where the prospect 
of success appeared more flattering. With this 


view lie proceeded against the forts of Trinidad 
and Spirito Santo, upon the shores of the Bio-bio. 
The governor, apprehensive that he should not 
be able to defend them, or not considering them 
as of sufficient importance, evacuated them in 
1583, and transferred the garrisons to another 
fortress, which he had directed to be built upon 
the river Puchanqui, in order to protect the city 
of Angol : So that the war now became in a 
great measure reduced to the construction and 
demolition of fortifications. 

The dictatorship of Guanoalca was rendered 
more remarkable by the military exploits of the 
heroine Janequeo than by his own. This woman 
was the wife of that valiant officer Guepotan, 
who for so long a time defended the post of Li- 
ben. After the loss of that important place he 
retired to the Andes, where he constantly endea- 
voured to stimulate those mountaineers to the 
defence of the country. Desirous of having his 
wife with him, he at length descended into the 
plains in search of her, but was surprised by the 
Spaniards, who were very solicitous to get him 
into their hands, and preferred being cut in 
pieces to surrendering himself prisoner. Jane- 
queo, inflamed with an ardent desire of avenging 
the death of her husband, in company with her 
brother Guechiuntereo, placed herself at the 
head of an array of Puelches, with which, in 
1590, she began to make inroads upon the Spanish 



settlements, killing all of that nation that fell 
into her hands. The governor, reinforced by a 
regiment of soldiers, which he had received from 
Peru, set out upon his march against her ; but 
she, constantly occupying the highest ground, 
and attacking unexpectedly sometimes the van, 
and at others the rear of his army, obliged him 
to retire, after having lost, to no purpose, much 
time and a considerable number of men. As he 
was of opinion that rigorous measures were the 
best suited to quell the pride of the Arauca- 
nians, he gave orders, before his retreat, that all 
the prisoners taken in this incursion should be 
hung : Among these was one who requested to 
be hung upon the highest tree, in ordsr that the 
sacrifice which he made of himself to his coun- 
try should be more conspicuous to his country- 
men,' and inspire them with a stronger determi- 
nation to defend their liberties. 

Janequeo having defended herself thus success- 
fully against a general, who was unquestionably 
a good soldier, and had gained a high reputation 
in the wars of Italy, Germany, and Flanders, 
proceeded against the fortress of Puchanqtii, 
not far from which she defeated and killed 
Aranda, the commander, who had advanced to 
meet her with a part of the garrison. But not 
having been able to take the fort, she retired at 
the commencement of the rainy season to the 
mountains of Villarica, where she fortified her- 




self in a place surrounded by precipices, which 
she deemed perfectly secure; from whence she 
daily infested the environs of that city in such a 
manner, that no one ventured to leave it. 

The governor, moved by the complaints of 
the citizens, sent his brother Don Louis to their 
aid, with the greater part of two reinforce- 
ments that he had lately received from Peru, 
under the command of Castillejo and Penalosa. 
The intrepid Janequeo awaited him valiantly in 
her retreat, repelling with great presence of mind 
the various assaults of the Spaniards ; until her 
soldiers being dispersed by the artillery, she saw 
herself obliged to provide for her safety by 
flight. Her brother was taken in attempting to 
escape, and obtained his life from the victors on 
condition of promising on oath to keep his sister 
quiet, and securing to them the friendship of his 
vassals and adherents ; but while this proposal 
was debated in a national council, he was killed 
by the Ulmen Catipiuque, who abhorred any 
kind of reconciliation. 

The old Toqui Guanoalca died at the close of 
this year, and in 1591, Quintuguenu, an enter- 
prising young man, and ambitious of glory, was 
appointed his successor. Having taken by assault 
the fort of Mariguenu, he encamped with two 
thousand men upon the top of that mountain, 
hoping, by some important victory, to render 
himself as celebrated there as Lautaro. The 

governor, undaunted by the recollection of the 
misfortunes which had befallen his countrymen in 
that ill-omened place, put himself at the head of 
one thousand Spaniards and a large number of 
auxiliaries, and immediately marched thither, 
resolving to dislodge the enemy, or at least to 
keep them besieged. 

After having given the necessary orders, he 
began at day-break to defile the difficult ascent 
of the mountain, leading the advanced guard 
in person, in front of which he had placed twenty 
half-pay officers, well experienced in this kind of 
war. Scarcely had he ascended half way, when 
he was attacked with such fury by Quintuguenu, 
that a general of less talents would have been 
driven headlong down with all his troops ; but, 
animating his men by his voice and example, he 
sustained for more than an hour the terrible en- 
counter of the enemy, till having gained step by 
step the level ground, he succeeded in forcing 
them into their entrenchments, without however 
being able to break their order. 

The Araucanians, mutually exhorting each 
other to die with glory, defended their camp 
with incredible valour until mid-day, when Don 
Carlos Irrazabal, after an obstinate resistance, 
finally forced the lines on the left with his com- 
pany. At the same time the quarter-master and 
Don Rodoiphus Lisperger, a valiant German 
officer, penetrated with their brigades in front 
a % 


and on the right. Quintuguenu, although sur- 
rounded on every side, rendered for a long time 
the event of the battle doubtful. He main- 
tamed his troops in good order, and conjured 
them not to dishonour by an ignominious defeat 
a place that had so often witnessed the victories 
of their ancestors. Whilst be flew from rank to 
rank animating his men, and constantly con- 
fronting the enemy, he fell, pierced with three 
mortal wounds by the governor, who had singled 
him out and taken aim at him. The last word 
he uttered was an enthusiastic exclamation of 

On seeing him dead, a part of his soldiers in 
despair suffered themselves to be cut in pieces, 
and the rest betook themselves to flight. Almost 
all the auxiliaries were slain, but of the Spa- 
niards it is said that only twenty fell in the. 
battle ; of which number was a Portuguese 
knight of the order of Christ, who was slain in 
the beginning of the conflict. 

The governor, highly gratified with being the 
first conqueror of the Araucanians on the formi- 
dable Mariguenu, conducted his army to the 
jea shore, where he was saluted with repeated 
discharges of cannon from the Peruvian fleet, 
which, in scouring the coast in search of the 
English, had witnessed the victory. These de- 
monstrations of general joj^ were answered on 
the part of the army by frequent volleys of 


musketry, and the customary military rejoicings. 
Availing himself of this opportunity, the go- 
vernor sent the quarter-master to Peru, on the re- 
turn of the fleet, in order to obtain the greatest 
possible reinforcement of troops to prosecute the 
war the ensuing campaign. 

In the meantime he abandoned the ancient situ- 
ation of the fortress of Arauco, and rebuilt it in 
-another more convenient upon the sea shore., 
where, in case of need, it could be more readily 
succoured. Coloeoio was lord of this district ; 
he was son to the celebrated Ulmen of that 
name, but of a disposition very different from 
that of his father. Indignant on seeing his 
lands occupied by the enemy, he endeavoured to 
drive them off, but being defeated and made pri- 
soner, he solicited and obtained his life, on con- 
dition of persuading his subjects, who had re- 
tired to the mountains, to submit to the Spanish 
government. These, on being urged by his wife 
Millayene to fulfil the promise of their chief, 
replied, that as his present misfortunes had been 
caused by love of his country, so ought he to 
endure them with a firmness worthy of his birth; 
that, stimulated by his example, they would 
confront all dangers to defend him, and to re- 
venge the outrages which he might suffer. The 
prince, irritated by this reply, devoted himself to 
the service of the Spaniards, and served them as 
a guide in the pursuit of his people. 


At this period, 1592, there was among the 
Araucanians a Spaniard who had been made 
prisoner in one of the fornier battles, and who 
by his ingratiating manners had obtained the 
esteem and confidence of the principal men of 
the nation. This man, either from gratitude for 
the treatment he had received, or at the insti- 
gation of the governor, applied himself to effect 
a treaty of peace with great hopes of success ; 
but the preliminary conditions proposed by him 
not proving agreeable to either of the parties, all 
his endeavours were ineffectual. The governor, 
irritated at the ill success of his proposals, set 
out on his march with all his army for the pro- 
vince of Tucapel, laying waste with fire and 
sword all that fell in his way. 

Paillaeco, who had been elected To qui in 
place of Quintuguenu, thinking himself not suf- 
ficiently strong to oppose the enemy openly, re- 
solved to draw them into an ambuscade. For 
this purpose he placed a hundred men on horse- 
back at the entrance of a wood, within which he 
had concealed the remainder of his forces, with 
orders for them to counterfeit flight on the ap- 
pearance of the enemy. This scheme at first 
promised success ; the Spaniards pursued them, 
but discovering in time that it was only a stra- 
tagem, they turned back and pretended to fly 
themselves, in order to induce their enemies to 
quit the wood and attack them in the open field, 


The Araucanians, not aware of the trick, ran 
into the snare, and being surrounded on every 
side, were almost all cut in pieces, together with 
their commander, after having sold their lives 
very dearly. The remainder took refuge in the 
marshes, where they secured themselves from the 
fury of the victors. 

These repeated victories, the cause of such 
exultation to the Spaniards, were but the pre- 
ludes of the severest disasters that they had 
ever experienced in Chili. It will, nevertheless, 
scarcely admit of a doubt that they must have 
cost much blood, since the governor, contrary to 
his custom, withdrew to Santiago after the last 
action, with the intention of awaiting there the 
reinforcements which he expected from Peru, 
and to raise as many recruits as possible in the 
northern provinces of the country. The rein- 
forcements were not long in arriving, but as they 
appeared to him insufficient to continue the war 
with advantage, he determined to go to Peru in 
person to solicit more considerable succours, 
committing in the meantime the command of the 
army to the quarter-master, and the civil go- 
vernment to the licentiate Pedro Viscarra. On 
his arrival at Lima he met with his successor in 
the government, who had been appointed by the 
court of Spain. This was Don Martin Loyola, 
nephew of St. Ignatius,* an officer of merit, who 
* The celebrated founder of the order of the Jesuits, 


had acquired the favour of the viceroy Toledo 
by taking Tupac Amaru, the last Xnca of Peru' 
in the mountains of the Andes. This service not 
only obtained for him the government of Chili, but 
also the princess Clara Beatrix Coya in marriage, 
the only daughter and heiress of the Inca Sayri 
Tupac. He arrived at Valparaiso in 1593, with 
a respectable body of troops, and immediately 
proceeded to Santiago, where he was received 
With every testimony of joy by the citizens. 




The ' To qui Paillamachu kills Loyola the Go- 
vernor, and destroys all the Spanish Settlements 
in Araucania. 

After the death of Paillaeco, the Araueanians 
appointed to the chief command the hereditary 
Toqui of the second XJthalmapu, called Pailla- 
machu, a man of a very advanced age, but of 
wonderful activity. Fortune/commonly supposed 
not to be propitious to the old, so far favoured 
his enterprises, that he surpassed all his pre- 
decessors in military glory, and had the singular 
felicity of restoring his country to its ancient 
state of independence. No sooner was he in- 
vested with the supreme power, than he appointed 
Pelantaru and Millacalquin, two officers not 
inferior to himself in merit, to the important 
charge of Vice Toqui, deviating in this instance 
from the established custom, which allowed only 
one lieutenant to the general. As the Arauca- 
nian force was, however, greatly diminished, he 
imitated the example of Antiguenu, and with- 
drew to the marshes of Lumaco, where he ap- 
plied himself to form an army capable of exe- 
cuting his extensive plans. 


Loyola, after having regulated the police of 
the capital, proceeded to Conception in order to 
attend to the business of the war. Paillamachu 
took advantage of this opportunity to send an 
officer, under pretence of complimenting him, 
to obtain information of his character and de- 
signs. Antipilian, who was charged with this 
commission, showed himself worthy of the trust 
reposed in him by the general. In the frequent 
conferences which the governor held with him, 
he endeavoured to impress him with an idea of 
the great power and immense resources of his 
sovereign, insinuating the necessity of the Arau- 
canians coming to an accommodation. The am- 
bassador, pretending to be convinced by his rea- 
sonings, replied : « We are not ignorant of the 
power of your prince, which extends from the 
east to the west. But we are not to be despised, 
for although we are but a small people, we have 
nevertheless hitherto resisted his immense power. 
Your ideas respecting peace are very different 
from ours. By peace we understand an entire 
cessation of hostilities, which is to be followed 
by a complete renunciation on your part of any 
pretended right of controul over us, and the 
restoration of all those lands which you have oc- 
cupied in our territories. You, on the contrary, 
under that name, seek to subject us, to which we 
will never consent while we have a drop of blood 
left in our veins" 


As the governor was of a generous disposition, 
lie could not but admire the noble sentiments of 
Antipillan, and dismissed him with the strongest 
demonstrations of esteem. But far from aban- 
doning the posts established in the Araucanian 
territory., he passed the Bio-bio in 1594, and 
founded a new city at a little distance from that 
river, to which he gave the name of Coya, in 
honour of the princess his wife. This he in- 
tended not only as a place of retreat for the in- 
habitants of Angol, which was in the vicinity, 
but also to protect the rich gold mines of Kila- 
coyan. He established therein a municipal ma- 
gistracy, and adorned it with several churches 
and monasteries ; and in order to render it more 
secure, constructed two castles in front of it, 
called Jesus and Chivecura, which protected 
both shores of the river. 

Paillamachu, solicitous of destroying this 
rising establishment, which reflected dishonour 
upon his command, in 1595 gave orders to Lon- 
cothequa, one of his captains, to take the fort of 
Jesus. This officer, after having burned one 
part of it, and twice penetrated into the other, 
was killed before he completed the enterprise. 
The Araucanian general began at length, in 
1596, to harass with frequent incursions the 
Spanish districts, both to subsist his troops and 
habituate them to a military life. The Spanish 
army in vain went in pursuit of him ; he always 



took care to avoid it, resolving to reserve his 
force for a more favourable occasion. 

Finding no other means to restrain him, Loyola 
erected in the neighbourhood of his encampment 
two forts, one upon the ancient site of that of 
Puren, and the other on the very border of the 
marshes of Lumaco. These he garrisoned with 
the greater part of a reinforcement of troops 
which at that time he received from Peru, and 
sent the remainder, in 1597, to found an 'esta- 
blishment in the province of Cujo, under the 
name of St. Louis de Loyola, which still exisfs^ 
although in a miserable condition, notwithstand- 
ing the advantages of its situation. 

Paillamachu soon took by storm the fortress 
of Lumaco, and gave the charge of reducing 
that of Puren to Pelantaru and Millacalquim 
Having in ten days reduced the garrison to ex- 
tremity, these officers, agreeably to (he instruc- 
tions of their general, retired on the arrival of a 
reinforcement of Spaniards under the command 
of Pedro Cortez, who had obtained great repu- 
tation in that war. The governor, nevertheless, 
shortly after arriving there with the rest of the 
army, ordered the fortifications to be demolished, 
and the garrison to be transferred to Angol* 
fearing to expose it to the fate of that of Lumaco' 
He then proceeded to Imperial, to secure that 
eity in the best possible manner against the- in- 
creasing strength of the enemy. 


After having repaired the fortifications of Im- 
perial, and also those of Viilarica and Valdivia, 
he returned to the Bio bio under an escort of 
three hundred men, whom he ordered back as 
soon as he thought himself in a place of security, 
retaining with him, besides his own family, only 
sixty half-pay officers and three Franciscan friars. 
Paillamachu, who had secretly watched his mo- 
tions, and followed him with two hundred sol- 
diers, conceived this a favourable opportunity to 
put his designs in execution. Accordingly, find- 
ing him encamped in the pleasant valley of Ca- 
ralava, he fell upon him, while he was asleep, on 
the night of the %2d of November, 1598, and 
lulled him with all his retinue. It would seem 
that the Araucanian general had formed confi- 
dent hopes of the success of this bold enter- 
prise, since, in consequence of his previous in- 
structions, in less than forty-eight hours after 
this event, not only the Araucanian provinces but 
those of the Cunchese and Huilliches were in 
arms, and the whole of the country to the Archi- 
pelago of Chiloe. Every Spaniard who had the 
misfortune of being found without the garrisons 
was put to death ; and the cities of Osorno, 
Valdivia, Viilarica, Imperial, Canete, Angol, 
Coya, and the fortress of Aranco, were all at 
once invested with a close siege. Not content 
with this, Paillamachu, without loss of time, 
crossed the Bit -bio, burned the cities of Con- 



ception and Chilian, laid waste the provinces in 
their dependence, and returned loaded with spoil 
to his country. 

On the first receipt of this melancholy news at 
the capital, the inhabitants, filled with conster- 
nation, abandoned themselves to despair, and 
agreed with one voice to quit the country and 
retire to Peru. As they had, however, some 
confidence in Pedro de Viscara, they assembled 
in council, and obliged him to take upon him- 
self the government, till the court, on being 
made acquainted with the death of Loyola, 
should appoint some other. This officer, who 
was more than seventy years old, began his march 
for the frontiers in 1599, with all the troops that 
he could raise, and had the courage to cross the 
Bio-bio, and in the face of the besieging enemy, 
withdraw the inhabitants from Angol and Coya, 
with whom he repeopled the cities of Conception 
and Chilian. But his government continued 
only six months ; for the viceroy of Peru, on 
being informed of the perilous situation of Chili, 
sent Don Francisco Quinones thither as po- 
vernor, with a numerous reinforcement of sol- 
diers, and a large supply of military stores. 
This commander had several actions with Pail- 
lamachu on the northern shore of the Bio-bio, 
whither the Araucanians had gone with an in- 
tention of laying under contribution, or of ra- 
vaging the Spanish provinces ; but none of them 


were decisive. The most celebrated was that of 
the plains of Yumbel. The enterprising Toqui 
being on his return, at the head of two thousand 
men, with a great number of animals which he 
had taken from the district of Chilian, Quinones 
attempted to cut off his retreat with an equal 
number, the most of whom were Europeans. 
The two armies advanced with equal resolution. 
The Spaniards in vain attempted to keep the 
enemy at a distance by a constant fire from eight 
field pieces and all their musketry. They very 
soon came to close quarters, and the battle was 
continued with incredible fury for more than two 
hours, till night parted the combatants, and 
Paillamachu, availing himself of the obscurity, 
repassed the Bio-bio. The accounts from whence 
our information is derived merely state in general 
terms, that a great number of the Araucanians 
were slain, and not a few of the Spaniards. The 
governor upon this occasion made a useless dis- 
play of severity, by ordering the prisoners to be 
quartered and hung upon the trees ; a proceeding 
highly disapproved by the most prudent of his 
officers, who, from motives of humanity or self- 
interest, advised him not to furnish the enemy 
with a pretext for retaliation. But his adhe- 
rence to the old maxim, of conquering by means 
of terror rendered him deaf to their remon- 
strances. The consequence of this engagement 
was the evacuation of the fort of Arauco and 


the city of Canete, the inhabitants of which re- 
tired to Conception. 

In the meantime Paillamaclni was in constant 
motion ; sometimes encouraging bj his presence 
tiie forces that besieged the cities, at others ra- 
vaging the Spanish provinces beyond the Bio- 
bio, to the great injury of the inhabitants. 
Having learned that the siege of Valdivia had 
been raised, he secretly hastened thither with a 
body of four thousand men, consisting of in- 
fantry and horse, among whom were seventy 
armed with arquebuses, taken in the last engage- 
ments from the Spaniards. On the night of the 
14th of November he passed the bi°oad river 
Calacaia or Valdivia by swimming, stormed the 
city at day-break, burned the houses, killed a 
great number of the inhabitants, and attacked 
the vessels at anchor in the harbour, on board of 
which many had taken refuge, who only effected 
their escape by immediately setting sail. After 
this he returned in triumph to join Miliacalquin 
to whom he had entrusted the guard of" the 
Eio-bio, with a booty of two million of dollars, 
all the cannon, and upwards of four hundred 

Ten days after the destruction of Valdivia, 
Col. Francisco Campo arrived there from Peru 
with a reinforcement of three hundred men, but 
finding it in ashes, he endeavoured, though in- 
effectually, to introduce those succours into 



the cities of Osorrio, Villarica, and Imperial. 
Amidst so many misfortunes,, an expedition of 
five ships of war from Holland arrived in 1600 
upon the coast of Chili, which plundered the 
island of Chiloe, and put the Spanish garrison to 
the sword. Nevertheless, the crew of the com- 
modore having landed in the little island of 
Talca, or Santa Maria, was repulsed with the 
loss -'of twenty-three of their men by the Arau- 
canians who dwelt there, and who probably sup- 
posed them to be Spaniards. 

Quioones, disgusted with a war which was far 
from promising a fortunate issue, solicited and 
obtained his dismission from the government. 
He was succeeded by the old quarter-master, 
Garcia Ramon, of whom much was expected, 
from his experience and long acquaintance with 
the enemy. But that very knowledge induced 
him to act on the defensive, rather than hazard 
that part of the kingdom which was still subject 
to Spain, although he had received a regiment 
of select troops from Lisbon, under the command 
of Don Franciseo Ovalle, father to the historian 
of that name. His government was, however, 
but of short duration. Alonzo Rivera, an officer 
who had rendered himself famous in the wars of 
the Low Countries, was sent out by the king as 
governor in his place, with a regiment of vete- 
rans. On assuming his office, he fortified with 
strong forts the shores of the Bio-bio, and greatly 



encouraged the inhabitants, who had not yet re- 
linquished the idea of quitting Chili. 

After a siege of two years and eleven months 
Villarica, a very populous and opulent city, fell 
at length, in 1692, into the hands of the Arau- 
canians. A similar fate, after a short interval, 
was experienced by Imperial, the metropolis of 
the southern colonies, which would have fallen 
some months before, had not its fate been pro- 
tracted by the courage of a Spanish heroine, 
called Ines Aguilera. This lady, perceiving the 
garrison to be discouraged and on the point of 
capitulating, dissuaded them from surrendering, 
and directed all the operations in person, until, a 
favourable opportunity presenting, she escaped 
by sea with the bishop and a great part of the 
inhabitants. She had lost during the siege her 
husband and brothers, and her valour was re- 
warded by the king with an annual pension of 
two thousand dollars. 

Osorno, a city not less rich and populous than 
the preceding, was not able much longer to resist 
the fate that awaited it. It fell * under the vio- 

* Modern as American history is, it lias had its full share of 
fable, and this city of Osorno furnished a subject for the last 
which has been invented. It is found in the twentieth volume 
of the Semanario Erudito. 

In this great effort of the natives of Chili to recover their 
country, Osorno resisted them vigorously, and held out for six 
months : at the end of that time the Spaniards repulsed the 


lent efforts of the besiegers, who, freed from 
their attention to the others; were able to bring 
their whole force against it. Thus, in a period 
of little more than three years, were destroyed 

besiegers in a general assault, and compelled them to break up 
the blockade ; being however afraid of another attack, they 
retired about three or four leagues, to a peninsula at the south 
foot of the Cordillera, formed by the lake from which the 
river Bueno issues. Here they built a city and secured it on 
the isthmus with walls, bulwarks, moats, and draw-bridges : 
and here they remained and multiplied so as to form another 
city on the opposite side of the lake. They have plenty of 
boats. Their weapons are the lance, sword, and dagger ; but 
whether of iron or not, the person who discovered the existence 
of these cities, had not been able to learn. They use also the 
thoug and ball, and are greatly dreaded for their skill in 
throwing it j and they have artillery, but no muskets. The 
Indians call them AlCahuncas. Formerly they used to buy 
salt from the Pehuences, and even from the Indians who are 
under the Spanish government, which they paid for in silver ; 
and this occasioned a great demand for salt at the Spanish 
settlements, where an ox was then the price of a loaf : but 
lately this demand has ceased, for they have found salt in 
abundance. They have retained their dress, their complexion, 
and their beards. A year only before this account was written, 
a man from Chiloe got to the city gates before the bridge was 
drawn up, and knocked for admittance. The soldier who was 
upon guard told him to hasten back as fast as possible, for 
their king, he said, was a cruel tyrant, and would infallibly put 
him to death if he was taken ; he marvelled indeed that the 
Indians had let him pass thus far. This man was killed on 
his way back; but the news of his adventure reached Valdivia, 
and was fully believed there. It seems the people of these 
cities were under a grievous tyranny, and were therefore de- 


all the settlements which Valdivia and his suc- 
cessors had established and preserved, at the ex- 
pense of so much blood, in the extensive country 
between the Bio-bio and the Archipelago of 
Chiloe, none of which have been since rebuilt, 
as what is at present called Valdivia is no more 
than a fort or garrison. 

The sufferings of the besieged were great, nor 
can the j scarcely be exceeded by those endured 
in the most celebrated sieges recorded in history. 
They were compelled to subsist on the most 
loathsome food, and a piece of boiled leather 
was considered as a sumptuous repast by the 
voluptuous inhabitants of Villarica and Osorno. 
The cities that were taken were destroyed in 
such a manner that at present few vestiges of 
tbem remain, and those ruins are regarded by 
the natives as objects of detestation. Although 

sirous of making their situation known to the Spaniards ; but 
the chiefs took every possible precaution to prevent this, and 
the Indians, who possessed the intervening country, were 
equally solicitous to prevent any intelligence of this state from 
reaching the Spanish settlements, because it would bring them 
farther into the land. 

This account is said to have been written in 1774, by Don 
Ignacio Pinuer, captain of infantry, and interpreter-general at 
Valdivia, and by him addressed to the president of Chili. The 
writer states that his thorough knowledge of the language of 
the natives, and his great intimacy with them, had enabled 
him, l>y the artful and persevering inquiries of eight and 
twenty years, to collect this information. — E, E. 


great numbers of the citizens perished in the 
defence of their walls, the prisoners of all ranks 
and sexes were so numerous, that there was 
scarcely an Araucanian family who had not one 
to its share. The women were taken into the 
seraglios of their conquerors. Husbands were, 
however, permitted for the most part to retain 
their wives, and the unmarried to espouse the 
women of the country ; and it is not a little 
remarkable that the mustees, or offspring of 
these singular marriages, became in the subse- 
quent wars the most terrible enemies of the 
Spanish name. 

The ransom and exchange of prisoners was 
also permitted. By this means many escaped 
from captivity. Some, however, induced by 
love of their children, preferred to remain with 
their captors during their lives ; others, who ac- 
quired their affection by their pleasing manners, 
or their skill in the arts, established themselves ad- 
vantageously in the country. Among the latter 
were Don Basil io Roxas and Don Antonio Bas- 
cugnan, both of noble birth, who acquired high 
reputation among the natives, and have left in- 
teresting memoirs of the transactions of their own 
times. But those who fell into brutal hands had 
much to suffer. Paillamachu did not long enjoy 
the applause of his countrymen ; he died at the 
end of the year 1603, and was succeeded by ^lu- 
pecura, his pupil in the school of Lumacq. 
§ 3 





PROM 1604 TO 1617. 

Second unfortunate Government of Garcia Ra- 
mon ; Restoration of the Court of Royal Audi- 
ence ; Ineffectual Negotiation for Peace. 

Whilst Alonzo Rivera was wholly intent upon 
checking the progress of the victorious Arauca- 
nians^ he was removed from the government of. 
Chili to that of Tucuman, in consequence of 
having married the daughter of the celebrated 
Aguilera without obtaining the royal permission. 
Garcia Ramon, his predecessor., was appointed to 
succeed him, and received at the same time with 
his commission, a thousand soldiers from Europe, 
and two hundred and fifty from Mexico. As 
he was now at the head of an army of three 
thousand regular troops, besides auxiliaries, he 
returned to invade the Araucanian territories, 
and penetrated without much opposition as far as 
the province of Boroa, where he erected a fort^ 
which he furnished with a good number of 


cannon, and a garrison of three hundred men, 
under the command of Lisperger. 

Huenecura waited till the retreat of the army 
to attack this new establishment. On his march 
thither he fell in with the commander Lisperger, 
who had left the fort with one hundred and sixty 
of his soldiers in order to protect a convoy, and 
cut in pieces the whole detachment. He then 
proceeded to the attack of the fort, which he 
assailed three times with great fury. The battle 
was continued with the utmost obstinacy for the 
space of two hours, but Egidius Negrete, who 
succeeded to the command in place of Lisperger, 
manifested in the defence so much valour and 
military skill, that the Araucanian general found 
himself under the necessity of converting the 
storm into a blockade, which was continued 
until the governor gave orders for the garrison 
to evacuate the place. 

After this the Spanish army proceeded to lay 
waste the enemy's country. For this purpose it 
was separated into two divisions, one under the 
command of the quarter-master, Alvaro Pineda, 
and the other under that of Don Diego Saravia. 
Huenecura, however, watching his opportunity, 
attacked and defeated them one after the other, 
and so complete was the rout, that there was not 
a single person who escaped death or captivity. 
Thus in a short time was that army, on which 
such flattering hopes had been founded, wholly 


dispersed. In consequence of these disasters,, in 
1608, the court of Spain issued orders,, that 
hereafter there should constantly be maintained 
on the Araucanian frontier a body of two thou- 
sand regular troops, for whose support an appro- 
priation of 292,279 dollars annually was made 
in the treasury of Peru. 

After having been suppressed for thirty-four 
years, the Court of Royal Audience was re- 
established on the 8th of September, 1609, in 
the city of St. Jago, to the great satisfaction of 
the inhabitants, since which period it has con- 
tinued to exist with a high reputation for justice 
and integrity. Ramon, who, by this new regu- 
lation, to the titles of governor and captain- 
general, "-had added that of president, returned 
and crossed the Bio-bio at the head of an army 
of about two thousand men. Huenecura ad- 
vanced to meet him in the defiles of the marshes 
of Lumaco. The battle was obstinate and 
bloody, and the Spaniards were in great danger 
of being entirely defeated; but the governor, 
placing himself in the front line, animated his 
troops so far that they at length succeeded in 
breaking the enemy. Shortly after this battle, 
on the 10th of August, 1610, he died in Con- 
ception, greatly regretted by the inhabitants, to 
whom he was much uncleared by his excellent 
qualities, and his long residence among them. 
He was also highly esteemed by the Arauca- 


loians, whom he always treated, when prisoners, 
with particular attention, and a humanity that 
did him honour in that age. 

According to the royal decree establishing the 
Court of Audience, the government now de- 
volved upon the eldest of the auditors, Don 
Louis Merlo de la Fuente. 

About the same time, either from disease or in 
consequence of a wound that he received in the 
last battle, died the Toqui Huenecura. His suc- 
cessor was Aillavilu the Second, whom Don Ba- 
silio de Roxas, a contemporary writer, represents 
as one of the greatest of the Araucanian generals, 
and as having fought many battles with Merlo, 
and his successor Don Juan Xaraquemada; 
but he neither mentions the places where they 
were fought, nor any particulars respecting 
them. , 

Among the missionaries atlhat time charged 
with the conversion of the Chilians, there was a 
Jesuit called Louis Valdivia, who, perceiving 
that it was impossible to preach to the Arauca. 
Bians during the tumult of arms, went to Spain, 
and represented in the strongest terms to Philip 
the Third, who was then on the throne, the great 
injury done to the cause of religion by the con- 
tinuance of the war. That devout prince, who 
had more at heart the advancement of religion 
than the augmentation of his territories, sent 
orders immediately to the government of Chili 
to discontinue the war, and settle a permanent 


peace with the Araucanians, by establishing the 
river Bio-bio as the line of division between the 
two nations. With a view to insure the more 
punctual execution of his orders, he also deter T 
mined to exalt the zealous missionary to the 
episcopal dignity, and commit to him the charge 
of the government of Chili ; but Valdivia re- 
fused to accept of anything except the privilege 
of nominating in his place a governor whose 
views were in conformity to his own. This was 
no other than Alonzo Rivera, who, as we have 
already observed, had been exiled to Tucuman. 

Satisfied with the prosperous issue of his 
voyage, Valdivia returned to Chili in 1612, with 
a letter from the king himself to the Araucanian 
congress, relative to the establishment of peace 
and the promotion of religion. Immediately on 
his arrival he hastened to the frontiers, and com- 
municated to the Araucanians by means of some 
prisoners whom he brought with him from Peru, 
the commission with which he was intrusted by 
the court. Aillavilu, who at that time held the. 
chief command, paid little attention to this iti* 
formation, considering it as merely a story in- 
vented for the purpose of deceiving and sur- 
prising him; but he soon after dying or resign- 
ing his office, his successor Ancanamon thought 
proper to inquire into the truth of the report. 
With this view he directed the Ulmen Carani- 
pangui to converse with Valdivia, and learn his 
proposals in an assembly of the Ulmenes. 


The missionary, on being invited by tbat 
officer, repaired under the protection of the Ul- 
men Lancamilla to Nancu, the principal place in 
the province of Catiray, where, in the presence 
of fifty of those chiefs, he made known his 
business and the substance of his negotiation, 
read the royal dispatches, and entered into a long 
explanation of the motives of his voyage, which 
concerned the general good of their souls. The 
assembly thanked him for his exertions, and 
promised to make a favourable report to the 

Carampangui insisted on accompanying Val- 
divia to Conception, where he met with the go- 
vernor, who dispatched the letter of the king to 
Ancanamon by Pedro Melendez, one of his en- 
signs, with a request that he would come to Pai- 
cavi, in order to confer with him upon the preli- 
minaries of the peace. The Toqui was not long 
in repairing to the place appointed, with a small 
guard of forty soldiers and several Ulmenes. 
In his train were also a number of Spanish pri- 
soners of the first families, to whom he had given 
their liberty. The governor, Valdivia, and the 
principal officers of the. government, came out 
to receive him, and conducted him to his lodg- 
ings under the discharge of artillery. They thea 
proceeded to discuss the articles of peace, which 
were, that the river Bio-bio should serve as a 
• barrier to both nations, so that neither should be 

permitted to pass it with an army ; that all de-. 
serters in future should be mutually returned, 
and that the missionaries should be permitted to 
preach the doctrines of Christianity in the Arau- 
car ian territories. 

The Araucaniao general required as a preli- 
minary the evacuation of the forts of Paicavi 
and Arauco, which had been lately erected upon 
the sea-coast. The governor abandoned the first, 
and agreed immediately on the conclusion of 
peace to quit the other As the consent of the 
chiefs of the four Uthalmapus was however re- 
quisite to ratify the treaty, Ancanamon proposed 
to go and seek them in person, and bring them to 
the Spanish camp. 

The negotiation was in this state of forward- 
ness, when an unexpected event rendered abortive 
all the measures that had been taken. Among 
the wives of Ancanamon was a Spanish lady, 
who, taking advantage of his absence, fled for 
refuge to the governor, with two small children, 
and four women, whom she had persuaded to 
become christians, two of whom were the wives, 
and the others the daughters of her husband. 
The indignation of the To qui on this occasion 
was extreme, though he was much less exas- 
perated at the flight of his wives, than the kind 
reception which they had experienced from the 
Spaniards. As soon as he obtained information 
of it he relinquished every thought of peace, aud 


returned back to demand them of the governor. 
His claim was taken into consideration ; but a 
majority of the officers, many of whom were 
opposed to a peace from the advantage which 
they derived from the prisoners, refused to sur- 
render the women to the Toqui, assigning as a 
reason their unwillingness to expose them to the 
danger of abandoning the faith which they had 
embraced. After many ineffectual propositions, 
Ancanamon, notwithstanding his resentment, was 
reduced to solicit merely the restoration of his 
daughters, whom he tenderly loved. He was 
answered, that as the eldest had not yet been 
converted to the christian faith, his request, as 
respected her, would be complied with, but that 
they could not so readily grant it in the case of 
the second, who had already been baptized. 

While affairs were in this critical state, ano- 
ther character appeared upon the stage, who re- 
vived the almost extinguished hopes of the de- 
sired accommodation. Utaflame, Arch-Ulmen 
of Ilicura, had ever been the most inveterate 
enemy of the Spanish name ; and in order to 
avoid all kind of commerce with the enemy, had 
constantly refused to ransom his sons or relations 
who were prisoners. He prided himself on having 
opposed with success all the governors of Chili, 
from the elder Villagran to Rivera ; nor had the 
Spaniards ever been able to obtain a footing in his 
province, ; though it was situated in the neigh- 


bourhood of Imperial. Valdivia having at this 
time sent back *one of his sons, who had beerj^ 
taken in the late war, he was so highly gratified 
that he came in person to visit him at the fort of 
Arauco ; and in return for the civilities that he 
experienced from him and the governor, offered 
to receive the missionaries in his province, and to 
persuade Ancanamon to make peace with the 
Spaniards. He observed, however, that it would 
be necessary in the first place to return him his 
women, which could be done without exposing 
them to any danger, by first obtaining from him 
a pass of safe conduct in their favour : this was 
also the opinion of Valdivia. Utiflame took 
upon himself the management of the business^ 
and departed, taking with him three missionaries,, 
Horatio Vecchio, of Sienna, cousin to Pope 
Alexander VII. Martin Aranda, a native of 
Chili, and Diego Montalban, a Mexican, the 
friends and companions of his benefactor Valdivia,, 
No sooner had the exasperated Toqui learned 
the arrival of the missionaries at Hicura, than he 
hastened thither with two hundred horse, and 
without deigning to listen to their arguments, 
slew them all, with their conductor Utiflame, 
who endeavoured to defend them. Thus were 
all the plans of pacification rendered abortive. 
Valdivia in vain attempted several times to re- 
vive the negotiation. The officers and soldiers 
who were interested in the continuance of the 


war, disconcerted all his schemes, and loudly de- 
manded vengeance for the blood of the priests 
who were slain. The governor, notwithstanding 
his pacific wishes, found himself compelled to 
yield to their demands, and the war, contrary to 
the pious intentions of the king, was recom- 
menced with greater fury than before. Anca- 
namon, on his part, eagerly desirous of revenging 
the affront he had received, incessantly harassed 
the Spanish provinces. His successor, Lonco- 
thegua, continued hostilities with equal obsti- 
nacy. Ovalle, a contemporary writer, observes, 
that he fought several bloody battles with the 
governor and his subaltern officers, but has given 
only an imperfect account of them. In 1617 
Rivera died in Conception, having appointed the 
eldest Auditor, Fernando Talaverano, as his suc- 
cessor, who after a government of ten months 
was succeeded by Lope de Ulloa. 

: vi|! 




FROM 1618 TO 1632. 

Baring Enterprises of the Toqiiis Lientur and 

Loncothegua having resigned, the chief com- 
mand of the Araucanian armies was conferred 
upon Lientur. The military expeditions of this 
Toqui were always so rapid and unexpected^, 
that the Spaniards gave him the appellation of 
the wizard. He appointed Levipillan his lieu- 
tenant-general, by whom he was perfectly se- 
conded in the execution of all his designs. Not- 
withstanding the Bio-bio was lined with sentinels 
and fortresses, he always contrived some means 
of passing and repassing it without experiencing 
any loss. His first enterprise was the capture of 
four hundred horses intended to remount the 
Spanish cavalry. He next ravaged the province 
of Chilian, and the Corregidor having marched 
to meet him, he entirely defeated and slew him, 


together with two of his sons, and several of the 
magistrates of the city. 

Five days after this action he proceeded to- 
wards St. Philip of Austria, or Yumbel, with 
six hundred infantry and four hundred horse, 
whom he sent out in several divisions to ravage 
the country in the vicinity, leaving only two 
hundred to guard the narrow pass of the Con- 
grejeras. Rebolledo, the commander of the 
place, provoked at his temerity, dispatched se- 
venty horse to take possession of the above- 
mentioned deffle and cut off his retreat, but they 
were received with such bravery by the troops 
of Lientur, that they were compelled to retire 
for security to a hill, after having lost eighteen 
of their number, with their captain. Rebolledo 
sent to their assistance three companies of in- 
fantry, and the remainder of the cavalry. Lien- 
tur, who by this time had arrived with all his 
army, immediately formed his troops in battle 
array, fell upon the Spaniards, notwithstanding 
the continual fire of their musketry, and at the 
first encounter put the cavalry to flight. The 
infantry, being thus left exposed, were almost all 
cut in pieces ; but thirty-six prisoners were taken 
by the victors, who were distributed in tho se- 
veral provinces of the country. 

Had Lientur at that time invested the place, it 
must inevitably have fallen into his hands : but, 
for some reason which does not appear, he de- 

VOL. II. t 


ferred the siege until the following year, whea 
his attempts to take it were rendered ineffectual 
by the valiant defence of Ximenes, the com- 
mander. This failure was, however, recom- 
pensed by the capture of Neculguenu, the gar- 
rison of which he put to the sword, and made 
prisoners of all the auxiliaries who dwelt in the 
neighbourhood. These successes were followed 
by many others equally favourable, whence, ac- 
cording to contemporary writers, who are satisfied 
with mentioning them in general terms, he was 
considered as the darling child of fortune. 

Ulloa, more a victim to the mortification and 
anxiety caused by the successes of Lientur than 
to sickness, died on the 20th of November,* 

f About this time the governor of Peru, D. Geronimo 
Luiz de Cabrera, made an expedition in search of the city of 
the Cesares — .the El Dorado of Chili. 

In Charles 5th's reign the bishop of Placencia is said to have 
sent out four ships to the Moluccas ; when they had advanced 
about twenty leagues within the straits of Magalhaens, three 
of them were driven on shore and lost, but the crew escaped. 
The fourth got back into the North Atlantick, and when the 
weather abated again attempted the passage, and reached the 
place where her comrades had been lost. The men were still 
on the shore, and entreated to be taken on board ; this was 
impossible— there was neither room nor provisions, and there 
they were left. An opinion prevailed that they got into the 
interior of Chili, settled there, and became a nation who 
are called th§ Cesares. It was believed that their very 
ploughshares are of gold. Adventurers reported that they 
fead been near enough to hear the sound of their bells ; and it 


1620, and was, according to the established cus- 
tom, succeeded by the eldest of the auditors, 
Christopher de la Cerda, a native of Mexico. 
For the better defence of the shores of the Bio- 
bio, he built there the fort which still goes by 
his name ; he had also a number of encounters 
with Lientur, and during the short period of his 
government, which continued but a year, was 
constantly occupied in protecting the Spanish 
settlements. His successor, Pedro Sores Ulloa, 

■ l 

was said that men of a fair complexion had been taken who 
were supposed to be of this nation.— Ovalle> L. 1. c. 5. 
do. L. 1 . c. 10. 

The existence of this city was long believed. Even after 
Feyjor had attempted to disprove, the Jesuit Mascardi went 
in search of it with a large party of Puelehes, and was killed 
by the Poy-yas on his return from the fruitless quest- — Dolrey- 
hojfer, T. 3, 40/. 

The groundwork of this belief is satisfactorily explained by 
Falkner, c. 4. p. 112. " The report," he says, " XliwX there is 
a nation in these parts, descended from Europeans, or the re- 
mains of shipwrecks, is, I verily believe, entirely false and 
groundless, and occasioned by misunderstanding the accounts 
of the Indians. For if they are asked in Chili concerning any 
inland settlement of Spaniards, they give an account of towns 
and white pe^plo, meaning Buenos Ayres, &c. &c. and so vice 
versa, not having the least idea that the inhabitants of these 
two distant countries are known to each other. Upon my 
questioning the Indians on this subject, I found my conjecture 
to be right; and they acknowledged, upon my naming Chiloe, 
Valdivia, &c. (at which they seemed amazed) that those were 
the places they had mentioned nader the description of Euro- 
pean settlements."— E* & 



continued the war with similar fortune, until his 
death, which happened on the 1 1th of September, 

1624. He was succeeded by his brother-in-law, 
Francisco Alava, who retained the office only six 

Lientur at length, advanced in years, and fa- 
tigued with his continual exertions, resigned, in 

1625, the chief command to Putapichion, a young 
man, of a character for courage and conduct very 
similar to his own, who had passed the early part 
of his youth among the Spaniards, as a slave to one 
Diego Truxillo. The Spaniards also possessed at 
the same time a commander of uncommon valour 
and military skill : this was Don Louis de Cor- 
dova, lord of Carpio, and nephew to the viceroy 
of Peru, by whom he was abundantly supplied 
with warlike stores and soldiers, and ordered, in 
the name of the court, not to confine himself to 
defensive war, but to attack directly the Arau- 
canian territory in various quarters. 

His first care on his arrival at Conception was 
to introduce a reform of the military, and to pay 
the soldiers the arrears that were due to them. 
Those offices that were vacant he conferred on 
the Creoles, or descendants of the conquerors, 
who had been for the most part neglected ; and 
by this measure, not only obtained their esteem, 
but that of all the inhabitants. After having; 
established order in the government, he directed 
his cousin Alonzo Cordova, whom he had ap- 


pointed quarter-master, to make an incursion 
with six hundred men in the provinces of Arauco 
and Tucapel. But he was not able to take more 
than a hundred and fifteen prisoners of both 
sexes, and a small number of cattle, the inhabi- 
tants having taken refuge with their families and 
effects in the mountains. Eight only attempted 
to oppose his march, who paid with their lives 
for their temerity. 

In the meantime, Putapichion endeavoured to 
signalize the commencement of his command, by 
the capture of one of the strongest places be- 
longing to the Spaniards on the Bio-bio. This 
was the fort of Nativity, situated on the top of 
a high and steep mountain, well furnished with 
soldiers and artillery, and both from its natural 
and artificial strength considered as impregnable. 
These considerations did not at all discourage 
the ardent temper of the young general. He 
came upon the fort unexpectedly ; in a moment 
scaled the difficult ascent, possessed himself of 
the ditch, and set on fire with burning arrows 
the palisades and houses of its defenders. But 
the latter collected themselves in the only bastion 
that the flames had spared, kept up from thence 
so severe a fire upon the enemy, that Putapichion., ' 
despairing after some time of being able to main- 
tain himself in the fort, retreated, taking with 
him twelve prisoners and several horses. 

From thence he crossed the Bio-bio, and al~ 


tacked the post of Quinel, which was defended 
by a garrison of six hundred men ; but failing 
also in this attempt, he turned against the de- 
voted province of Chilian, from whence he 
brought off a great number of peasants and of 
cattle, notwithstanding the exertions of the ser- 
geant-major to stop his rapid march. In the 
following year, 1638, the governor, eager for re- 
taliation, determined to invade the Araucanian 
provinces in three directions ; to the quarter- 
master he assigned the maritime country, and to 
the sergeant-major that of the Andes, reserving 
the intermediate for himself. In pursuance of 
this plan, at the head of twelve hundred regular 
troops, and a correspondent number of auxili- 
aries, he traversed the provinces of Encol and 
Puren, captured a great number of men and 
cattle, and having passed the river Cauten, ra- 
vaged in a similar manner the rich district ot 

Whilst he was returning, well pleased with the 
success of his expedition, Putapichion presented 
himself with three thousand men in order of 
battle. The first encounter was so violent that. 
many of the Spaniards having fallen, the rest 
were compleatly broken ; but being at length 
rallied by the exertions of their valiant officers, 
they maintained their ground, so that the battle 
became more regular, and the slaughter was 
eoual on both sides. Putapichion, however, 


who had recovered the spoil and taken some 
prisoners, during the confusion that the Spa- 
niards were thrown Into, thinking it not pru- 
dent to risk them on the event of a battle, ordered 
a retreat. 

On his return to Conception, the governor 
met with the sergeant-major and, the quarter- 
master. The first had not been able to effect 
any thing of importance, as the enemj had taken 
refuge in the mountains. The latter reported 
that having taken two hundred prisoners, and a 
booty of seven thousand horses and a thousand 
cattle, he had the misfortune to lose almost all of 
them, in consequence of a dreadful tempest that 
lie met with on his return. 

Jn the meantime, there arrived in Chili a new 
governor, appointed by the court in place of 
Cordova. This was Don Francisco Laso, a 
native of St. Andero, an officer who had gained 
much reputation in the wars of Flanders, where 
he had passed the principal part of his life. He 
at first sought to come to an accommodation with 
the Araucanians, and for that purpose sent home 
all the prisoners that were in the garrisons, with 
particular instructions to that effect. But their 
minds were not yet disposed to peace, the glory 
of establishing it being reserved for his suc- 
cessor ; he, however, prepared the way for it by 
his victories, and by the ten years of uninter- 

T # 


mitted war that he made upon the enemy, in con- 
sequence of the rejection of his proposals. 

Laso was not, however, in the commencement 
of his military operations highly favoured by 
fortune. The quarter- master, Cordova, who 
was preparing by his orders to invade the mari- 
time provinces at the head of thirteen hundred 
men, was completely routed in Piculgue, a 
small district not far from the fort of Arauco. 
Putapichion, having placed a part of his army 
in ambuscade, contrived, with much skill, to 
induce him to come to battle in an unfavourable 
position. The Spanish horse which formed the 
advanced guard, not able to sustain the shock of 
the Auracanian cavalry, which had at this time 
become very expert, gave way. The infantry, 
besog in consequence left exposed and surrounded 
upon all sides, were wholly destroyed after a 
combat of more than five hours, during which 
they performed prodigies of valour in resisting 
the furious assaults of the enemy. In this action 
the commander himself was slain, with five cap- 
tains, ^nd several other officers of merit. 

As soon as (he governor was informed of this 
defeat, he set out in person with a considerable 
body of troops in search of Putapichion. In 
the meantime, the latter, mocking the vigilance 
of Rebolledo the sergeant-major, who had pro- 
mised to prevent his crossing the Bio-bio, passed 
that river with two hundred men, and taking ad- 


■vantage of the absence of the Spanish army, laid 
waste the neighbouring provinces. On receiving 
this information Laso returned, and immediately 
occupied with his troops all the known passages 
of the river ; then taking with him a cumber of 
men equal to that of the enemy, he went in pur- 
suit of them with all possible expedition. Having 
arrived at a place called Roblena, upon the shore 
of the river Itata, he was attacked with such 
courage by the Araucanian general, that at the 
first encounter the Spaniards gave way, forty of 
them being slain., with several of their officers. 
The rest owed their safety wholly to the valour 
of their commander, who, with that cool in- 
trepidity which marks a great character, not only 
rallied and restored them to order, but also en- 
abled them to repulse the enemy with loss. 

Putapichion, satisfied with his success, and 
still more with having taken the scarlet cloak of 
the governor, returned and passed the Bio-bio 
without being pursued. He was received by his 
army with the liveliest demonstrations of joy, 
and in order to gratify them, he resolved to revive 
the almost forgotten festival of the pruloncon. 
A Spanish soldier taken in one of the preceding 
battles was the victim selected for this barbarous 
spectacle, and after the usual ceremonies the Ul- 
men Maulican, by order of the general, dis- 
patched him with a blow of his club. This 
cruel action, which some have sought to excuse 

on the principle of retaliation, has dishonoured 
all the laurels of Putapichion. The torture of 
an innocent prisoner, upon whatever motive, or 
under whatever pretext it is inflicted, is a crime 
of the deepest dye against humanity. This cruel 
amusement was not however pleasing to all the 
nation. Many of the spectators, as Don Fran- 
cisco Bascugnan, an eye witness, asserts, com- 
passionated the fate of the unfortunate soldier, 
and Mauiican, to whom the office of dispatching 
him was assigned as a mark of honour, declared 
that he had consented to it with the utmost re- 
luctance, and only to avoid quarrelling with his 

The governor having left to the quarter- 
master, Fernando Sea, the charge of guarding 
the Bio-bio, with thirteen hundred Spaniards 
and six hundred auxiliaries, withdrew to San- 
tiago, where he raised two companies of infantry 
and one of cavalry. At the same time he re- 
ceived from Peru five hundred veteran soldiers. 
With these^troops, and those whom he found 
upon the frontier, having formed a sufficient 
army, he proceeded immediately to the fort of 
Arauco, which he knew was menaced by Puta- 
pichion. That indefatigable general had indeed 
commenced his march for that place with seveq 
thousand chosen troops whose valour he thought 
nothing was able to resist. But intimidated by 
some superstitious auguries of the Ex-Toqui 


Lientur, who bad resolved to share with him the 
glory of the enterprise, the greater part of them 
forsook him on the road. Not discouraged by 
this desertion, and observing that in war there 
could be no better omen than an eager desire to 
conquer, he continued his march with thirty-two 
hundred of the most determined who were re- 
solved to follow him, and encamped at a short 
distance from the fort. Some of his officers ad- 
vised him to attack it that same night, but he 
declined it, as well for the purpose, of resting 
his troops, as not to give the enemy occasion to 
reproach him with always taking advantage, like 
a robber, of darkness to favour his operations. 

Having resolved to offer him battle the next 
day, the governor made his men prepare them- 
selves for it in the best manner possible, and that 
night had a skirmish with an advanced party of 
the eneray, who had approached very near the 
wall, and burned the houses of the auxiliaries. 
.At day-break he took possession with his army of 
the important post of Alvarrada, which was 
Janked by two deep torrents, placing the cavalry, 
commanded by the quarter-master Sea, on the 
right, and the infantry, under the orders of ser- 
geant-major Rebolledo, on the left. 

Putapichion having observed the movements 
of the Spaniards, presented himself with his 
army in such excellent order, that the governor 
could not avoid openly expressing his admiration. 

•: ••;• . ;■ , 



The soldiers, whose heads were adorned with 
beautiful leathers, appeared as much elated as if 
going to a banquet. The two armies remained 
some time observing each other, till at length 
Quepuantu, the Vice Toqui, by order of the 
general, gave the signal of attack. The governor 
then ordered the cavalry to charge, but it was so 
severely handled by the enemy's horse, that it 
took to flight, and sheltered itself in the rear of 
the army. At the same time the Araucanian in- 
fantry broke the Spanish lines in such a manner, 
that the governor gave up all for lost. Fortu- 
nately for him, at this critical moment Putapi- 
chion was slain. Availing himself of the con- 
fusion produced among the Araucanians by this 
circumstance, he rallied his troops, and charged 
the enemy anew, who were wholly intent on 
carrying off the body of their general. This 
they succeeded in effecting, but were completely 
routed; Quepuantu in vain endeavouring to stop, 
and bring them back to the charge, killing severaj 
of them with his own hand. Great was the 
slaughter of the fugitives who were pursued to 
the distance of six miles ; of the Spaniards many 
also were killed; but from different account* 
given by Writers, the number cannot be ascer- 





FROM 1633 TO 1720. 


Continuation of the War; New Expedition of 
the Dutch against Chili ; Peace concluded with 
the Araucanians ; Its short Duration; Ex- 
ploits of the To qui Clentaru; Series of Spanish 
Govornors to the Year 1720. 

From the death of Putapichion to the termi- 
nation of the government of Don Francisco Laso, 
the Toquis elected by the Araucanians continued 
the war with more rashness than good conduct. 
None of them, like Antiguenu or Paillamachu, 
possessed that coolness requisite to repair their 
losses, and counterbalance the power a f the 
Spaniards. Quepuantu, who from the rank vf 
a subaltern had been raised to the chief com- 
mand, after the battle of Alvarrada, retired to 
a valley covered with thick woods, where he 
erected a house with four opposite doors, in order 
to escape in case of being attacked. The go- 
vernor, having discovered the place of his re- 




treat, sent the quarter-master Sea to surprise him 
with four hundred light armed troops. These 
arriving unexpectedly, Quepuantu took refuge, 
as he had planrv j£* in the wood, but ashamed of 
hi- flight, he returned with about fifty men, who 
had come to his assistance, and furiously attacked 
the assailants. He continued fighting desperately 
for half an hour., but having lost almost all his 
men, accepted a challenge from Loncomallu, 
chief of the auxiliaries, by whom, after a long 
combat, he was slain. 

A similar fate, in 1634, befelhis successor and 
relation Loncomilla, in fighting with a small 
number of troops against a strong division of the 
Spanish army. Guenucalquin, who succeeded 
him, after having made some fortunate incursions 
into the Spanish provinces, lost his life in an en- 
gagement with six hundred Spaniards, in the pro- 
vince of Ilicura. Curanteo, who was created 
Toqui in the heat of the action, had the glory of 
terminating it by the rout of the enemy, but was 
shortly after killed in another conflict. Curi- 
mil l^ ore darm & tnan his predecessor re- 
peatedly ravaged the provinces to the north of 
the Bio-bio, and undertook the siege of Arauco, 
and of the other fortifications on the frontier, 
but was finally killed by Sea in Calcoimo. 

During the government of this Toqui, the 
Dutch attempted a second time to form an alli- 
ance with the Araucanians, in order to obtain 


possession of Chili ; but this expedition was not 
more fortunate than the first. 

The squadron, which consisted of four ships* 
was dispersed by a storm on its arrival on the 
coast in 1638. A boat, well manned and armed, 
being afterwards dispatched to the island of 
Mocha, belonging to the Araucanians, the in- 
habitants, supposing that they came to attack 
them, fell upon the crew, put the whole to 
death, and took possession of the boat. Another 
experienced a similar misfortune in the little 
island of Talca, or Santa Maria. The Arauca- 
nians, as has been already observed, were equally 
jealous, and not, as may be readily imagined, 
without reason, of all the European nations. 
Notwithstanding the ill-success of the Dutch, 
Sir John Narborough, an English naval com- 
mander, undertook some years after a similar 
enterprise, by order of his sovereign Charles the 
Second; but in passing the straits of Magel- 
lan, he lost his whole fleet, which was much 
better equipped than that of the Dutch. 

In the meantime the governor, taking advan- 
tage of the imprudence of the Araucanian com- 
manders, continued constantly to lay waste their 
provinces. By a proclamation he had at first 
directed that every prisoner taken in these in- 
cursions, capable of bearing arms, should be put 
to death ; but afterwards, actuated by more hu- 
mane sentiments, he ordered that they should be 


sent to Peru. This sentence was, however, more? 
hittev to them than death. Whenever they came 
in sight of land, which is very common during 
that navigation, they hesitated not to throw 
themselves overboard, in the hope of escaping 
by swimming and returning to their country. 
Many had the good fortune to save themselves 
in this manner ; but those who were not able to 
elude the vigilance of the sailors, as soon as they 
were landed on the island, or at the port of Cal- 
lao, exposed themselves to every peril to effect 
their escape and return to their much loved 
country, coasting with incredible fatigue the 
immense space of ocean between the port and the 
river Bio-bio. Even their relations, more soli- 
citous to deliver them from the miseries of exile 
than from death itself, when they were con- 
demned to that punishment, frequently sent em- 
bassies to the governor to negotiate their ransom, 
out he always refused to consent to it, until they 
had laid down their arms, and submitted to his 

Laso had greatly at heart the performance of 
the promise, which, like several of his prede- 
cessors, he had made the king, of putting an end 
to the war. He of course put in operation every 
means possible of attaining that end. Indeed, 
no one was more capable of succeeding ; but he 
had to contend with an invincible people. Never- 
theless, he employed every measure that military 


science suggested to him, to effect their subju- 
gation ; now endeavouring by his victories to 
humble their pride, now ravaging their country 
with fire and sword, and now restraining them 
by the construction of fortresses in different 
places in their territory. He also founded a city 
not far from the ruins of Angol, to which he 
gave the name of St. Francis de la Vega. This 
settlement, which was protected by a garrison of 
four companies of horse .and two of foot, was 
taken and destroyed by the Toqui Curimilla the 
Very year of its foundation. 

A war so obstinate must necessarily have caused 
the destruction of a great number of men. The 
Spanish army had become more than one half 
diminished, notwithstanding the numerous re- 
cruits with which it was annually supplied from 
Peru. On this account the governor sent Don 
Francisco Avendano to Spain to solicit new re- 
inforcements, promising to bring the war to a 
termination in the course of two years. But the 
court, judging from the past that there was little 
reason to expect so successful an issue, appointed 
him a successor in the person of Don Francisco 
Zuniga Marquis de Bayde-s, who had given un- 
questionable proofs of his political and military 
talents, both in Italy and Flanders, where be had 
sustained the office of quarter-master-general. 

On his arrival in Chili in 1740, this nobleman, 
either in consequence of private instructions from 
\ VOL. II. u 



the minister ^ or of his own accord, had a per*- 
sonal conference with Lincopichion, to whom the 
xiraucanians, upon the death of Curiniilla, had 
confided the command of their armies. Fortu- 
nately, both the commanders were of the same 
disposition, and being equally averse to so de- 
structive a war, readily agreed upon the most 
difficult articles of peace. The 6th of January 
of the following year was the day fixed for its 
ratification, and the place of meeting, the village 
of Quillin, in the province of Puren. 

At the time fixed the Marquis appeared at 
the appointed place, with a retinue of about ten 
thousand persons, from all parts of the kingdom, 
who insisted on accompanying him. Lincopi- 
chion, who also came there at the head of the 
four hereditary Toquis, and a great number* of 
Ulmenes and other natives, opened the conference 
with a very eloquent speech. He then, accord- 
ing to the Chilian custom, killed a camel, and 
sprinkling some of the blood on a branch of cin- 
namon, presented it in token of peace to the go- 
vernor. The articles of the treaty were next 
proposed and ratified ; they were similar to those 
which had been accepted by Ancanamon, except 
that the Marquis required that the Araucanians 
should not permit the landing of any strangers 
upon their coast, or furnish supplies to any 
foreign nation whatever ; this being conformable 
to the political maxims of the nation, was readily 


granted. Thus was a period put to a war of 
ninety years, and this grand negotiation was ter- 
minated by the sacrifice of twenty-eight camels, 
and an eloquent harangue from Antiguenu, 
chief of the district, upon the mutual advan- 
tages which both nations would derive from the 
peace. After this the two chiefs cordially em- 
braced, and congratulated each other on the 
happy termination of their exertions; they then 
dined together, and made each other mutual pre- 
sents, and the three days succeeding were past by 
both nations in feasting and rejoicing. 

In consequence of this treaty all the prisoners 
were released, and the Spaniards had the satis- 
faction of receiving, among others, forty-two 
Of those who had been in captivity since the time 
of Paillamachu. Commerce, which is insepa- 
rable from the good understanding of nations, 
was established between the two people ; the 
lands that had been deserted in consequence of 
hostile incursions were repopulated, and by their 
regular produce animated the industry of their 
undisturbed possessors ; the hopes of religion 
became also again revived, and the missionaries 
began freely to exercise their ministry. 

Notwithstanding these and other advantages 
which were to be expected from the peace, there 
were, among both the ^Araucanians and the 
Spaniards, some unquiet tempers, who endea- 
voured by specious reasons to prevent its ratifi- 


cation. The first said that it was only a scheme 
to deceive the Araucanians, in order at a future 
time to conquer them with more facility, by ren- 
dering them unaccustomed to the use of arms. 
Those of the Spaniards, on the contrary, pre- 
tended to be afraid that, if peace were established, 
the population of the enemy would be so much 
increased, that they would become sufficiently 
powerful to destroy all the Spanish settlements 
in Chili. Of the latter some had even the bold- 
ness to cry " to arms/' and endeavour to insti- 
gate the auxiliaries to commence hostilities at 
the very time of the conference. But the Mar- 
quis, by justifying his intentions to the one, and 
reprimanding the other party, prevented the re- 
newal of the war, and put the last hand to his 
glorious undertaking, which was approved and 
ratified by the court. 

In. 1643, two years after the peace, the im- 
portance of the article. inserted hy the governor 
in the twenty was rendered very apparent to the 
Spaniards, by a last attempt made by the Dutch 
to possess themselves of Chili. Their measures 
were so well taken, that had they been in the 
least seconded by the Araucanians, they must 
have infallibly succeeded. Having left Brasil, 
which they had conquered, with a numerous 
fleet, well provided wjgi men and cannon, they 
took possession of the harbour of Valdi via, which 
had been deserted for more than fbriy years, 


where they intended to form an establishment in 
order to conquer the rest of the kingdom. With 
this view they immediately began building three 
strong fjrts at the entrance of the river, in order 
to secure its possession. 

The Araucanians were invited, with the most 
flattering promises, to join them ; this they not 
only declined, but strictly adhering to the stipu- 
lations of the treaty, refused to furnish them 
with provisions, of which they were greatly in 
want. The Cunchese, to whom the territory 
which they had occupied belonged, following 
the counsel of their allies, refused alscr to treat 
with them, or supply them. In consequence of 
this refusal, the Dutch, pressed with hunger, and 
hearing that a combined army of Spaniards and 
Araucanians were on their march against them, 
were compelled to abandon the place in three 
months after their landing. The Marquis de 
Mancura, son to the viceroy of Peru, having 
soon after arrived there in search of them with 
ten ships of war, fortified the harbour, and par- 
ticularly the island, which has since borne tha 
titular name of his family. 

On the termination of the sixth year of his 
pacific government, Baydes, was recalled by the 
court, and Don Martin Muxica appointed in his 
place. He succeeded in preserving the kingdom 
in that state of tranquillity in which he found it, 
no other commotion occurring, during his go- 
v 3 




vernment, but that produced by a violent earth- 
quake, which, on the 8th of May, 1647, de- 
stroyed part of the city of Santiago. The for- 
tune of his successor, Don Antonio Acugna, was 
very different. During his government the war 
was excited anew between the Spaniards and 
Araucanians, but contemporary writers have left 
us no account of the causes that produced it. 

Clentaru, the hereditary Toqui of Lauquc- 
mapu, being in 1655 unanimously elected ge- 
neral, signalized his first campaign by the total 
defeat of the Spanish army, commanded by the 
sergeant-major, who fell in the action, together 
with all his men. This victory was followed by 
the capture of the fortresses of Arauco, Colcura, 
St. Pedro, Talcamavida, and St. Rosendo. The 
next year the Araucaoian general crossed the 
Bio-bio, completely defeated Acugna, the go- 
vernor, in the plains of Yumbel, destroyed the 
forts of St. Christopher, and of the Estancia del 
Mey, and burned the city of Chilian. 

I regret much the want of materials for this 
part of my work, as all the memoirs of which I 
have hitherto availed myself terminate at this 
period; even the successes of Clentaru being 
only mentioned incidentally. All that we know 
is, generally, that this war was continued with 
great violence for a period of ten years, under 
the government of Don Pedro Portel Casanate, 
land Don Francisco Meneses. The last, who 


was a Portuguese by birth, bad the glory of ter- 
minating it in 1665, by a peace more permanent 
than that made by Baydes. But, after freeing 
himself of the Araucanians, he had the misfor- 
tune to engage in a contest of a different kind 
with the members of the Royal Audience, who 
opposed his marrying the daughter of the Mar- 
quis de la Pica, as being contrary to the royal 
decrees. The quarrel was carried to such length, 
that the court of Spain was obliged to send out 
to Chili the Marquis de Navamorquende, with 
full powers to determine their difference. That 
minister, after due inquiry, sent Meneses to Peru, 
and took possession of his office. After him, to 
the end of the century, the government was ad- 
ministered in succession by Don Miguel Silva, 
Don Joseph Carrera, and Don Thomas Marin 
de Proveda, all of whom appear to have main- 
tained a good understanding with the Arauca- 
nians, though Garro had nearly broken with 
them, on occasion of removing the inhabitant^ 
of the island of Mocho in 1686, to the north 
shore of the Bio-bio, in order to cut off all com- 
munication with foreign enemies. 

The commencement of the present era was 
marked in Chili by the deposition of the governor 
Don Francisco Ibanez, the rebellion of the in- 
habitants of Chiloe, and the trade with the 
French. Ibanez, like Meneses, was banished to 
Peru, for having, as is said, espoused the party 
u 4 


m opposition to the house of Bourbon in the way 
of succession. His office, until the year 1720, 
was filled by Don Juan Henriquez, Don An- 
drew Uztariz, and Don Martin Concha. The 
islanders of Cbiloe were soon restored to obedi- 
ence, through the prudent conduct of the quarter- 
master-general of the kingdom, Don Pedro Mo- 
lina, who was sent against them with a consider- 
able body of troops, but who succeeded in re- 
ducing them rather hj nnld measures than by 
useless victories. 

The French, in consequence of the above- 
mentioned war of succession, possessed them- 
selves for a time of all the external commerce of 
Chili. From 1707 to 1717 its ports were filled 
with their ships, and they carried from thence 
incredible sums in gold and silver. Many of 
them who became attached to the country settled 
themselves in it, and have left numerous descend- 
ants. It was at this period, that the learned 
father Feuille, who remained there three years, 
made his botanical researches and meteorological 
Observations upon the coast. His amiable qua- 
lities obtained him the esteem of the inhabitants, 
who still cherish his memory with much affection^ 




A Brief Account of the War of the 

Toquis Vilu- 

milla and 

Curignancu ; 

Spanish Governors to 

the Year 1 


The Araucanians had for some time been very 
much dissatisfied with the peace. They perceived 
that it gave the Spaniards an opportunity of 
forming new establishments in their country. 
They also endured very impatiently the insolence 
<jf those who were designated by the title of 
Captains of the Friends., and who having been 
introduced under pretence of guarding the mis- 
sionaries, arrogated to themselves a species of 
authority over the natives, who, stimulated by 
resentment for these grievances, determined, in 
1722, to create a Toqui, and have recourse to 

The choice fell upon Vilumilla, a man of low 
rank, but one who had acquired a high reputation 
for his judgment, courage, and extensive views. 
His object was no less than the expulsion of the 
Spaniards from the whole of Chili. To succeed 
in this arduous enterprise, it was necessary to 
obtain the support of all the Chilians, from the 
confines of Peru to the Bio-bio. Vast as was 


the plan, it appeared to biiii not to be difficult of 
execution. Haying killed in a skirmish three or 
four Spaniards, and among them one of the pre- 
tended Captains of Friends,, he dispatched; ac- 
cording to custom, a messenger with one of their 
ringers, to the Chilians in the Spanish provinces, 
inviting them to take arms at a signal to be given 
by kindling fires upon the tops ,of the highest 
mountains. On the 9ih of March, 1723, the 
day appointed for the open declaration of hosti- 
lities, fires were accordingly kindled upon the 
mountains of Copiapo, Coquimbo, Quillota, 
Rancagua, Maule, and Itata. Owing to the 
smallness of their numbers, or their apprehension 
of the issue of the war, the natives, however* 
made no movement. 

Vilumilla was, however, by no means discou- 
raged on seeing his projects evaporate in smoke. 
As soon as he had declared war, he set out imme- 
diately at the head of his troops to attack the 
Spanish settlements. But before commencing 
his march, he was careful to give information to 
the missionaries, and request them to quit the 
country, in order to avoid being ill-treated by 
his detached parties. The capture of the fort 
of Tucapel was the first fruit of this expedition. 
The garrison of Arauco, fearing the same fate^ 
abandoned the place. Having destroyed these 
fortresses, he directed his march against that of 
Puren, which he expected to possess himself of 


without resistance. But XJrrea, the command- 
ing officer,, opposed him so vigorously that he 
was compelled to besiege it. In a short time the 
garrison was reduced to great extremities from 
hunger and thirst, as the aqueduct which sup- 
plied them with water had been destroyed by the 
enemy, and the commander, having made a sortie 
in order to procure supplies, was slain, together 
with the soldiers accompanying him. 

In this critical state of affairs, the governor, 
Don Gabriel Cano, who had succeeded Concha., 
arrived with an army of five thousand men. 
Vifurnilla, expecting immediately to come to 
action, posted himself behind a torrent, and 
drew up his troops in order of battle : but 
Cano, though repeal dly provoked by the enemy, 
thought it more advisable to abandon the place* 
and retire with the garrison. The war after- 
wards became reduced to skirmishes of but little 
importance, which were finally terminated by 
the celebrated peace of Negrete, a place situated 
at the "onfhieiiee of the rivers Bio-bio and Lara, 
where the treaty of Quillan was reconfirmed, and 
the odious title of Captain of Friends wholly 

Cano, after a mild and harmonious govern- 
ment of fifteen years, died in the city of St. Jago. 
He was succeeded by his nephew, Don Manuel 
Salamanca, who was appointed by the viceroy of 
Peru, and whose whole conduct was conformable 


to the humane maxims of his uncle. Don Joseph 
Manso, who was sent from Spain as his successor, 
brought orders from the king to .collect the nu- 
merous Spanish inhabitants dispersed over the 
country in compact societies. For this purpose, 
in 1742, he founded the cities of Copiapo, Acon- 
cagua, Melipilla, Rancagua, St. Fernando, Cu- 
rieo, Tab a, Tutuben, and Angeles. In reward 
for this service he was promo£e4 to the splendid 
dignity of viceroy of Peru. His successors con- 
tinued to form new establishments, but these 
have never flourished like the first. In 1753, 
Santa Rosa, Guasco-alto, Casablanca, Bella- 
Isla, Florida, Coulemu, and Quirigua, were 
built by Bon Domingo Rosas. He also sent in- 
habitants to settle the large island of Juan Fer- 
nandez, which till that time had remained desert 
to the great injury of commerce, as the pirates, 
found therein a secure retreat, from whence they 
could with facility attack the trading ships. 
Don Manuel Amafc, who was afterwards viceroy 
of Peru, in 1729, founded upon the Araucanian 
frontier the cities of St. Barbara, Talcamavida , 
and Gual qui, 

Don Antonio Guill Gonzaga attempted under 
Lis government to effect more than his prede 
cessors. He undertook to compel the Arauca- 
nians to live in cities. This chimerical scheme 
was ridiculed by those who were best acquainted 
with the country, while others supposed it prac- 


ticable. Many counsels were held to devise the 
most suitable means of carrying this scheme into 
execution, which the wishes of the governor 
made him consider as very easy. The Arauca- 
nians were informed of all these proceedings by 
their spies, and apprehensive of the danger to 
which such an innovation might expose their 
liberties, they met secretly to deliberate upon 
the measures they should take to eliHe the de- 
signs of their neighbours without having re- 
course to arms, when the following resolutions 
were adopted by the national council : In the 
first place, to delay as long as possible the 
business, by equivocal replies and delusive pro- 
mises. Secondly, When pressed to commence 
building, to require from the Spaniards tools and 
ether necessary aid. Thirdly, To have recourse 
to arms whenever they found, themselves obliged 
to begin the work, but to conduct it in such a 
manner, that only the provinces that were com- 
pelled to build should declare war, the others re- 
maining neutral in order to be able to mediate a 
peace. Fourthly, To come to a general rupture 
whenever they found that the mediation of the 
latter would not be accepted. Fifthly, To allow 
the missionaries to depart without injury, as they 
had nothing to accuse them with but of being 
Spaniards. Sixthly, To make choice imme- 
diately of a Toqui, who should have in charge 
to attend to the execution of the above-mentioued 



regulations, and to have every thing in readiness 
to take the field as soon as circumstances should 
require it. 

In compliance with this last article they pro- 
ceeded to the election that very day. The suf- 
frages were unanimous in favor of Antivilu, 
Arch-Ulmen of the province of Maquegua, who 
possessed great influence in the assembly; but 
he having declined, on account of the neutrality 
which it had been agreed his province should 
maintain, the choice fell upon Curignancu^ 
brother to the Ulmen of Encol, who combined 
all the qualities necessary at such a crisis. 

At the first conference the governor proposed 
his plan under every aspect that could render it 
agreeable. The Araucanians, agreeably to their 
previous agreement, objected, appeared to con- 
sent, equivocated, and ended by requesting the 
necessary assistance for beginning the work. 
Haying pointed out the situations which appeared 
the most eligible for the erection of the new 
cities, a great quantity of wrought iron was sent 
them by the governor, together with provisions 
and cattle for the transportation of the timber. 
The work, nevertheless, made no progress. la 
consequence of this, the quarter-master Cabrito 
repaired thither with several companies of sol- 
diers, in order to stimulate the operations, and 
placed superintendauts in every quarter. The 
sergeant-major Rivera was charged with the 



building of Nininco, and captain Burgoa with 
that of the other city, which was to be erected 
on the shore of the Bio-bio ; while the quarter- 
master directed the operations from his head- 
quarters at Angol. 

The Araucanians, however, instead of pick- 
axes seized their lances, slew the superintendants, 
and having; united to the number of five hundred 
under the standard of their Toqui, proceeded to 
besiege Cabrito in his camp. Burgoa, after 
having been very roughly treated, was set at 
liberty, in consequence of his being said to be 
an enemy of the quarter-master. The sergeant- 
major, escorted by a missionary, crossed the Bio- 
bio in sight of the enemy, who were in search of 
him to kill him, and afterwards returned at the 
head of four hundred men to relieve Cabrito. 
Another missionary, Don Pedro Sanchez, re- 
quested the Araucauian officer sent to escort him 
to forgive a Spaniard by whom he had been 
grievously offended a short time before ; the 
Araucanian replied, that he had nothing to fear 
while in his company ; besides, that the present 
was no time to think of revenging private in- 
juries. Such was the attention paid to the se- 
curity of these characters, that not a Spaniard 
was slain who was able to avail himself of their 

In the meantime the governor entered into an 
alliance with the Pehuenches, in order to attack 


the Araticanians in several places at the same 
time. Curignancu, being informed of their ap- 
proach, fell , upon them unexpectedly on their 
leaving the Andes, took prisoners their general, 
Coligura, with his son, whom he put to death, 
and completely routed them. This disgrace, 
which appeared calculated to embitter that 
nation for ever towards the Araucanians, on the 
contrary reconciled them so completely, that they 
have ever since aided them in their expeditions, 
and have become the most implacable enemies of 
the Spaniards. Curignancu availed himself of 
the assistance of these mountaineers during the 
war to harass the provinces in the vicinity of the 
capital. Since that time they have made a prac- 
tice of frequently attacking the Spanish caravans 
from Buenos Ay res to Chili, and every year fur- 
nishes some melancholy information of that kind. 
Gonzaga, whose sanguine expectations had led 
him to be too hasty in giving information to the 
court of the success of his grand project, could 
not endure the mortification of seeing it wholly 
destroyed. A chronic complaint, to which he 
was subject,, was so much increased by this dis- 
appointment, that it deprived him of life in the 
second year of the war, to the great regret of 
the inhabitants, to whom he was much endeared 
by his estimable qualities. Don Francisco Xavier 
de Morales succeeded him by the appointment of 
the viceroy of Peru, The neutral provinces, as 


Ihad been concerted, had now declared in favour 
of the others, and the war was prosecuted with 
vigour. Curignancu on the one side, and his 
brave Vice To qui Leviantu on the other, kept 
the Spanish troops, which had been reinforced 
by several divisions from Spain, constantly in mo- 
tion. It is not in our power to notice particu- 
larly the different actions ; among others a bloody 
battle was fought in the beginning of the year 
1773, mention of which was made in the Euro- 
pean gazettes of that period, at which time the 
war had cost the royal treasury and individuals 
one million seven hundred thousand dollars, 

The same year an accommodation was agreed 
on. Curignancu, who was invested by his nation 
with full powers to settle the articles, required 
as a preliminary, that the conferences should be 
held in the city St. Jago, Although this re- 
quisition was conirary-to the established custom, 
it was nevertheless granted by the Spaniards 
without much difficulty. When they afterwards 
came to treat of the terms of peace, the Arauca- 
nian plenipotentiary made another proposition, 
which appeared more extraordinary than the 
fjrst. He required that his nation should be 
allowed to keep a minister resident in the city of 
St. Jago. The Spanish officers who were pre- 
sent strongly opposed this demand, but the go- 
vernor thought it advisable to grant \t, as -by 
this means he would have it in his power more 

VOL. 11. x 



readily to adjust any disputes that might arise. 
These two proposals, however, considering the 
disposition and mode of living of the Arauca- 
nians, may furnish a copious field for conjecture. 
The other articles of the peace were not attended 
with the least difficulty ; the treaties of Quillin 
and Negrete being by mutual consent revived. 

On the death of Gonzaga, the court of Spain 
sent Don Augustin Jauregui to govern Chili, 
who has since filled with universal approbation 
the important office of viceroy of Peru. His 
successor, Don Ambrosio Benavides, at present, 
renders the country happy by his wise and be- 
neficent administration. 



Present State of Chili. 

From the brief relation that we have given of 
the occurrences in CJhili since its discovery, it 
will be seen that its possession has cost Spain 
more blood and treasure than all the rest of her 
settlements in America, The Araucanians, oc- 
cupying but a small extent of territory, have 
with far inferior arms not only been able to 
counterbalance her power till then reputed irre- 
sistible, but to endanger the loss of her best esta- 
blished possessions. Though the greater part of 
her officers had been bred in that school of war, 
the low countries, and her soldiers, armed with 
those destructive weapons before which the most 
extensive empires of that continent had fallen, 
were considered as the best in the world, jet 
have this people succeeded in resisting them. 

This will appear more wonderful when we call 
to mind the decided superiority that the disci- 
pline of Europe has ever given its troops in all 
parts of the world. The rapidity of the Spanish 
conquests excited universal astonishment. A few 



Portuguese gained possession of an extensive 
territory in the East, with a facility almost 
incredible, notwithstanding the number and 
strength of the natives, who were accustomed to 
the use of fire-arms. Their general, Pacheco, 
with a hundred and sixty of his countrymen, 
several times defeated the powerful Zamorin, 
who commanded an army of fifty thousand sol- 
diers, well supplied with artillery, without the 
loss of a single man. Brito, who was besieged 
In Cananor, was equally successful in defeating 
a similar army. Even in our days, Mons. de la 
Touche, with three hundred French, put to 
flight an army of eighty thousand Indians, who 
had invested him in Pondicherry, and killed 
twelve hundred with the Joss of only two of his 
men. Notwithstanding the combined efforts of 
force and skill, the Araucanians have constantly 
kept possession of their country. A free people, 
however inconsiderable in point of numbers, can 
perform wonders : The page of history teems 
with examples of this kind. ' 

The Spaniards, since losing their settlements 
in Araucania, have prudently confined their views 
to establishing themselves firmly in that part of 
Chili, which lies between the southern confines, 
of Peru and the river Bio-bio, and extends from 
the 24th to the 36th and a half degree of south 
latitude ; this, as has been already mentioned, 


Ihey have divided into thirteen provinces.* They 
Also possess the fortress of Valdivia, in the 
country of the Cunchese, the Archipelago of 
Chiloe, and the island of Juan Fernandez. These 
provinces are governed by an officer, who has 
usually the rank of lieutenant-general, and com- 
bines the title of president, governor, and cap- 
tain-general of the kingdom of Chili. He re- 
sides in the city of St. Jago, and is solely de- 
pendant upon the king, except in case of war, 
when, in certain points, he receives his directions 
from the viceroy of Peru. 

In quality of captain-general he commands 
the army, and has under him, not only the three 
principal officers of the kingdom, the quarter- 
master, the sergeant-major, and the commissary, 
but also the four governors of Chiloe, Valdivia, 
Valparaiso, and Juan Fernandez. As president 
and governor he has the supreme administration 
of justice, and presides over the superior tri- 
bunals of that capital, whose jurisdiction extends 
over all the Spanish provinces in those parts. 

* During the government of Jauregui, the province of 
Maule was divided into two, the river of that name, serving as 
the boundary for each : the part situated to the nonh of it 
retaining its former name, and that lying to the southward 
assuming that of Cauquenes its capital. Of late years a far- 
ther reduction of that province has taken place, by the sepa* 
ration from it on the north of three curacies, in order to form, 
with some of the lands of Calchagua, the new province of 




The principal of these is the Tribunal of 
Audience, or Royal Senate, whose decision ' is 
final in all causes of importance both civil and 
criminal, and is divided into two courts, the one 
for the trial of civil, and the other for that of 
criminal causes. Both are composed of several 
respectable judges called auditors, of a regent, 
a fiscal or royal procurator, and a protector of 
the Indians, All these, officers receive large sa- 
laries from the court. Their judgment is final, 
except in causes where the sum in litigation ex- 
ceeds ten thousand dollars, when an appeal may 
be had to the supreme council of the Indies. 
Justice, as has been already observed, is uni- 
versally agreed to be administered by them with 
the utmost impartiality. The other supreme 
courts are that of Finance, of the Cruzada, of 
Vacant Lands, and the Consulate or Tribunal of 
Commerce, which is wholly independent of any 
other of that kind. 

The provinces are governed by Prefects, for- 
merly called Corregidors, but at present known 
hy the name of sub-delegates ; these, according 
to the forms of their institution, should be of 
royal nomination, but, owing to the distance of 
the court, they are usually appointed by the 
captain-general, of whom they style themselves 
the lieutenants. They have jurisdiction both of 
civil and military affairs, and their emoluments 
©f office depend entirely upon their fees, which 


are by no means regular. In each capital of a 
province there is, or at least should be, a muni- 
cipal magistracy called the Cabildo, which is 
composed, as in other parts of the Spanish do- 
minions, of several members, called Regidores, 
who are appointed for life, of a standard-bearer, 
a procurator, a forensic judge, denominated the 
Provincial Alcalde, an Alguazil, or high sheriff, 
and of two consuls, or bur go-masters, called Al- 
caldes. The latter are chosen annually from 
among the principal nobility by the Cabildo 
itself, and have jurisdiction both in civil and 
criminal causes in the first instance. 

The inhabitants are divided into regiments, 
which are obliged to march to the frontiers or 
the sea^coast in case of war.* Besides this 

* In the royal service, there are at present (1792) fifteen 
thousand eight hundred and fifty-six militia troops, enrolled in 
the two bishoprics of Santiago and Conception, ten thousand 
two hundred and eighteen in the first, and five thousand six 
hundred an.l thirty-eight in the latter. These military corps 
were first formed in \%ff % during the government of Don 
Augustin de Jaregui, and consist of the choicest men in the 
kingdom. They are called out only upon public occasions, 
and seldom perform the duty of sentinels or patroles, enjoying 
this privilege in consequence of always holding themselves 
ready for war, and continually exercising themselves in arms. 

Besides this regular militia, there are a great many city 
militias that are commanded by commissaries, who act as 
colonels.. They have under them several companies, Ibe 
jiuinberof which is various and depends upon the extent of the 

x 4 


militia, the king maintains there a sufficient force, 
of regular troops for the defence of the country * 
but as this establishment has been augmented of 
i&te, I cannot determine the number. ] n Con- 
ception, wbieli is upon the Araucanian frontier, 
there are two regiments, one of cavalry and one 
of infantry. The cavalry is commanded by the 
brigadier-general, E> on Ambrosio Higgi ns a 
native of Ireland, who, by his enlightened mind 
and excellent disposition, has gained the love and 
esteem of all the inhabitants. He is likewise 
quarter-master and intendant of the department 
of Conception^ The infantry, as well as the 

district; these in like manner have no fixed number, some- 
times exceeding one hundred me ^ &M ^ 
short. From these companies, the recruits to supply the va 
cancies m the regular corps are drawn or selected. They serve 
as guards for the prisons, and for the escort of criminals, and 
perform such other duties as the police demands, without 
being exempted from military service when occasion requires 
whence all persons capable of bearing arms are enrolled in 
these companies, except such as are immediately necessary for 
cultivating the land, and taking care of the cattle-tya*. Trans. 

* All the veteran troops throughout Chili amount to one 
thousand nine hundred and seventy-six men, and consist of 
two companies of artillery, nine of horse, including the Queen's 
dragoons at Santiago, and the remainder infantry.-^*. 

t On the 2lst of November, 1787, this gentleman was ap* 
pointed by the king, president, governor, and captain-general ' 


artillery,, is under the command of two lieu- 
tenant-colonels. The city of St. Jago also keeps 
in pay some companies of dragoons for its pro- 
tection. The revenues and expenses of the go- 
vernment I am unable to ascertain, as they have 
been considerably increased within a few years. 

As respects the ecclesiastical government, Chili 
is divided into the two large dioceses of St. Jago 
and Conception, which cities are the residence of 
the bishops, who are suffragans to the archbishop 
of Lima. The first diocese extends from the 
confines of Peru to the river Maule, compre- 
hending the province of Cujo upon the other 
side of the Ancles. The second comprises all 
the rest of Chili with the islands, although the 
greater part of this extent is inhabited by pagans. 
The cathedrals are supplied with a proper 
number of canons, whose revenues depend i«pon 
the tythes, as do those of the bishops. The 
court of inquisition at Lima has at St. Jago a 
commissioner, with several subaltern officers. 

of Chili, and on the 19th of September, 1789, field.marshal of 
the royal armies.- At the present time, 1792, he discharges 
the duties of those offices with ail that vigilance and attention 
which characterize him, and which so" important a trust re- 
quires. On his first accession to the government, he visited in 
person the northern provinces, for the purpose of dispensing 
justice and encouraging agriculture, opening of the mines, 
commerce, and fishery. He also established public schools, 
repaired the roads, and built several cities. — Ibid* 


Pedro Valdivia, on his first entering Chili, 
brought with him the monks of the order of 
Mercy, and about the year 1553 introduced the 
Dominicans and strict Franciscans. The Au- 
gustins established themselves there in 1595, 
and Hospitallers of St. John of God about the 
year 1615. These religious orders have all a 
number of convents, and the three first form 
distinct jurisdictions. The brothers of St. John 
of God have the charge of the hospitals, under 
a commissary, who is dependant upon the pro- 
vincial of Peru. These are the only religious 
fraternities now in Chili. The Jesuits, who 
came into Chili in 1593 with the nephew of 
their founder, Don Martin de Loyola, formed 
likewise a separate province. Others have se- 
veral times attempted, but without success, to 
form establishments, the Chilians having always 
opposed the admission of new orders among 
them. In St. Jago and Conception are several 
convents of nuns, but they are the only cities 
that contain them. 

The cities are built in the best situations in 
the country. Many of them, however, would 
have been better placed for the purposes of com- 
merce upon the shores of the large rivers. This 
is particularly the case with those of more recent 
construction. The streets are straight, intersect- 
ing each other at right angles, and are thirty-six 
French feet in breadth. On account of earth- 


quakes,, the houses are generally of one story ; 
they are, however, very commodious, white- 
washed without, and generally painted within. 
Each is accommodated with a pleasant garden, 
irrigated by an aqueduct that furnishes water 
for the use of the family. Those belonging to 
the wealthier classes, particularly the nobility, 
are furnished with much splendour and taste. 
The inhabitants, perceiving that old buildings of 
two stories have resisted the most violent shocks, 
have of late years ventured to reside in the upper 
rooms, and now begin to construct their houses 
in the European manner. In consequence of 
this the cities have a better appearance than for- 
merly, and the more so, as instead of forming 
their houses of clay hardened in the sun, which 
was supposed less liable to injury, they now em- 
ploy brick and stone. Cellars, sewers, and wells, 
were formerly much more common than at pre- 
sent, a circumstance which may have contri- 
buted to render the buildings more secure from 

The churches are generally more remarkable 
for their wealth than their style of architecture. 
The cathedral and the church of the Dominicans 
in the capital, which are built of stone, are* 
however, exceptions. The fiiat was constructed 
at the royal expense, under the direction of the 
present bishop, Don Manuel Alday, an excellent 
and learned prelate; it is built in a masterly 





style, and is 384 French feet in front. The plari 
was drawn by two English architects, who su- 
perintended the work; hut when it was half 
finished they refused to go on, unless their wages 
were increased. In consequence of this the 
building was suspended, when two of the In- 
dians, who had worked under the Englishmen, 
and had sec recti y found means of instructing 
themselves in every branch of the art, offered to 
complete it, which they did with as much skill 
and perfection as their masters themselves could 
have displayed. In the capital the following 
edifices are also worthy of remark : the barracks 
for the dragoons, the mint, which has been lately 
built by a Roman architect, and the hospital for 
orphans, founded by Don Juan Nic-Aguirre, 
Marquis of Monte- pio, and endowed by his 
present majesty, who patronizes with much libe- 
rality all establishments of public uti!ity. 

Spanish Chili, in consequence of the freedom 1 
granted to its maritime trade by the present «-o- 
vernment, is peopling with a rapidity propor- 
tioned to the salubrity of its climate and the 
fertility of its soil. Its population in general is 
composed of Europeans, Creoles, Indians, Ne- 
groes, and Mustees. The Europeans, except a 
few French, English, and Italians, are Spaniards, 
who for the most part are from the southern pro- 
vinces of Spain. The Creoles, who form the 
greater number, are the descendants of Euro- 

I )]■'■; 


peans. Their character, with some slight dif- 
ference, proceeding from climate or government, 
is precisely similar to that of the other American 
Creoles of European origin. The same modes 
of thinking, and the same moral qualities, are 
discernible in them all. This uniformity, which 
furnishes much subject for reflection, has never 
yet been considered by any philosopher in its 
full extent. Whatever intelligent and unpre- 
judiced travellers have observed respecting the 
characters of the French and English Creoles, 
will perfectly apply to that of the Chilian.* 

* The Creoles are generally well made. Those deformities 
so common in other countries are very rarely to be found 
among them- Their courage has frequently signalized itself 
in war by a series of brilliant actions ; nor would there be 
any better soldiers in the world if they were less averse to 
discipline. Their history furnishes no traits of that cowardice, 
treachery, and base conduct, which dishonour the annals of all 
nations/and scarcely can an instance be adduced of a Creole 
having committed a disgraceful act. 

Their minds are untainted with dissimulation, artifice, or 
suspicion. Possessing great frankness and vivacity, and a high 
opinion of themselves, their intercourse is wholly free from 
that mystery and reserve which obscure amiableness of cha- 
racter, depress the social spirit, and chill sensibility. 

An ardent imagination, which admits of no restraint, ren- 
ders them independent and inconstant in their inclinations. It 
impels them to the pursuit of pleasure with an eagerness to 
which they sacrifice their fortunes and their very existence. A 
keen penetration, a remarkable quickness in conceiving and ia 
^pressing their ideas with force, the talent of combining 



They are generally possessed of good talents, 
and succeed in any of the arts to which they 
appl/ themselves. They would make as great 
progress m the useful sciences as they have done 
in metaphysics, if they had the same motives to 
Stimulate them as are found in Europe. They 
do n t readily imbibe prejudices, and are not 
tenacious m retaining them. As scientific books 
and instruments, however, are very scarce, or 
sold at an exorbitant price, their talents are 
either never developed, or are wholly employed 
upon trifles. The expenses of printing are also 
so great, as to discourage literary exertion, so 
that few aspire to the reputation of authors. 
The knowledge of the civil and canonical laws 
is held in great esteem hy them, so that many of 
the Chilian youth, after having completed their 
course of academical education in Chili, pro- 
ceed to Lima, which is highly celebrated for its 
schools of law, in order to be instructed in that 

The line arts are in a very low state in Chili, 
and even the mechanical are as yet very far from 
perfection. We may except, however, those of 
carpentry, and the working of iron and the pre- 

added to that of observation, and a happy mixture of all the 
qualities of mind and of character that render man capable of 
the greatest performances, prompt them to the boldest under- 
takings, when stimulated by oppression.-.Ray>wfr History of 
the Indies, vol. v. lib. ii. 


cious metals, which have made considerable pro- 
gress, in consequence of the information ob- 
tained from some German artists, who were in- 
troduced into the country by that worthy eccle- 
siastic, Father Carlos, of Hainhausen in Bavaria, 

The important change which the exertions of 
the present monarch have so materially contri- 
buted to produce throughout his dominions, in 
directing the attention of his subjects to useful 
improvements, has extended itself to these parts. 
The arts and sciences, which before were either 
not known, or very imperfectly, at present engage 
the attention of the inhabitants, so that there is 
leason to hope that in a short time the state of 
the country will assume a very different ap- 

The peasantry, though for much the greater 
part of Spanish origin, dress in the Araucanian 
manner. Dispersed over that extensive country, 
and unencumbered by restraint, they possess 
perfect liberty, and lead a tranquil and happy 
life, amidst the enjoyments of that delightful 
climate.* They are naturally gay, and fond of 

* The principal part of these healthy and robust men live 
dispersed upon their possessions, and cultivate with their own 
hands a greater or less extent of ground. They are incited to 
this laudable labour by a sky always clear and serene, and 
a climate the most agreeably temperate of any in the two 
hemispheres, but more especially by a soil whose fertility has 
excited the admiration of all travellers,— Raynal, lib. viii. ; 


ail kinds of diversion. They have likewise a 
taste for music, and compose verses after their 
manner, which, although rude and inelegant, 
possess a certain natural simplicity more interest- 
ing than the laboured compositions of cultivated 
poets. Extemporaneous rhymers, or improver 
satori, are common among them, and are called 
in their language Palladorcs. Those known to 
possess this talent are held in great estimation, 
and apply themselves to no other occupation' 
In the countries dependant on the Spanish colo- 
nies, there is generally no other language than 
the Spanish spoken • but on the frontiers? the 
peasants speak the Araucauian or Chilian as well 
as the former. 

The men dress in the French, and the women 
in the Peruvian fashion, except that the women 
of Chili wear their garments longer than those * 
of Peru. In point of luxury, there is no differ- 
ence between the inhabitants of the two coun- 
tries • Lima prescribes the fashions for Chili, as 
Paris does for the rest of Europe. Those who 
are wealthy make a splendid display in their 
dress, their servants, coaches, or titles. Chili 
alone, of all the American provinces, has en- 
joyed the superior privilege of having two of 
its citizens exalted to the dignity of grandees of 
Spam ; these are, Don Fernando Irrazabal, Mar- 
quis of Valparaiso, born in St. Jago, who was 
viceroy of Navarre, and generalissimo of the 


Spanish army in the time of Philip the Fourth t 
and Don Fermin Caravajal, Duke of St. Carlos, 
a native of Conception, who resides at present at 
the court of Madrid. Don Juan Covarrubias, 
who was a native of St. Jago, in the beginning 
of the present century entered into the service of 
the king of France, and was rewarded with the 
title of Marquis of Covarrubias, the order of 
the Holy Ghost, and the rank of Marshal in the 
French army. 

The salubrity of the air, and the constant 
exercise on horseback to which they accustom 
themselves from childhood, render them strong 
and active, and preserve them from many diseases. 
The small pox is not so common as in Europe, but 
it makes terrible ravages when it appears. This 
disease was, in the year 1766, for the first time 
introduced into the province of Maule, where it 
became very fatal. A countryman who had re- 
covered from it, conceived the idea of attempting 
to cure a number of unhappy wretches, who had 
been abandoned, by cow's milk, which he gave 
them to drink, or administered to them m clysters. 
With this simple remedy he cured all those whom 
he attended ; while the physicians with their com- 
plicated prescriptions saved but a very few. I 
have mentioned this anecdote, as it serves strongly 
to confirm the successful experiments of M. Las- 
sone, physician to the queen of France, in the 
cure of the small pox with cow's milk, published 



by himself in, the medical transactions of Paris 
for the year 1779. The countryman, however, 
employed milk alone, whereas M. de Lassone 
thought it advisable to mis it with a decoction 
of parsley roots. These instances would seem 
to prove that milk has the singular property of 
lessening the virulence of this disorder, and re- 
pressing its noxious or deadly qualities. 

The inhabitants of the country are generally 
very benevolent. Contented with a comfortable 
subsistence, they may be said scarcely to know 
what parsimony or avarice is, and are very rarely 
infected with that vice. Their houses are open 
to all travellers that come, whom they freely en- 
tertain without an idea of pay, and often on these 
occasions regret that they are not more wealthy, 
in. order to exercise their hospitality to a greater 
exteM. This virtue is also commoain the cities.* 
'To this cause it is owing that they have not 
hitherto been attentive to the erection of inns 
and public lodging-houses, which will, however, 
become necessary when the commerce of the in- 
terior is more increased. 

*: Throughout Chili they are extremely kind to strangers ; 
the inhabitants are unequalled in point of hospitality, and I 
.have myself experienced such great and important favours, 
that 1 cannot find words to express my gratitude. The ill re- 
turn that they have frequently met with from individuals of 
our nation, has never been able to produce a diminution of 
their native hospitality.— Funlls, vol. ii. 


Lord Anson, in his voyage, gives "a particular 
description of the dexterity of the South Ame- 
rican peasants in managing the laqui, with which 
they take animals, either wild or domestic. la 
Chili, the inhabitants? of the country constantly 
carry this laqui with them/fastened to the sad- 
dles, in order to have it ready upon occasion* 
and are very skillful in the use of it. It con- 
sists merely of a strip of leather several fathoms 
in length, well twisted in the manner of a cord, 
and terminated by a strong noose of the same 
material. They make use of it both on foot and 
horseback, and in the latter case with equal cer- 
tainty whether amidst woods, mountains, or steep 
declivities. On these occasions, one end of it is 
fastened under the horse's belly, and the other 
held by the rider, who throws it over the flying 
animal with a dexterity that scarcely ever misses 
its aim. Herodotus makes mention of a similar 
noose which was used in battle by the Sagartians.* 
The Chilians have also employed the laqui with 

* The SagartJi were originally of Persian descent, and use 
the Persian language; they have no offensive weapons either 
of iron or brass, except their daggers ; their principal depend- 
ance in action is upon cords made of twisted leather, which 
they use in this manner : when they engage an enemy, they 
throw out these cords, having a noose at the extremity ; jf 
they entangle in them either horse or man, they without dif- 
ficulty put them to death. — Beloes' Herodotus* vol. iii. Poly mi 
nia ? page 205. 




success against the English pirates, who have 
landed upon their coast. They are also skillful 
m the management of horses, and in the opinion 
of travellers, who have had an opportunity of 
witnessing their dexterity and courage in this 
exercise, they might soon be formed into the 
best body of cavalry in the world. Their at- 
tachment to horses renders them particularly 
fond of horse-racing, which they conduct in the 
English manner. 

The negroes, who have been introduced into 
Chili wholly by contraband means, are subjected 
to a state of servitude which may be considered 
as tolerable in comparison to that which they 
endure in many parts of America, where the 
interest of the planter stifles every sentiment of 
humanity. As the planting of sugar and other 
articles of West-Indian commerce has not been 
established in Chili, the slaves are employed in 
domestic services, where by attention and dili- 
gence they more readily acquire the favour of 
tneir mas ters. Those in most esteem are either 
such as are born in the country of African pa- 
rents, or the mulattoes, as they become more at- 
tached to the family to which they belong. 

The humanity of the government or the in- 
habitants has introduced in favour of this unfor- 
tunate race a very proper regulation. Such of 
them as by their industry have obtained a sum 
©f money sufficient for the purchase of a slave, 


can ransom themselves by paying it to their 
masters, who are obliged to receive it and set 
them at liberty, and numbers who have in this 
manner obtained their freedom, are to be met 
with throughout the country. Those who are 
ill-treated by their owners can demand a letter of 
sale, which is a written permission to them to 
seek a purchaser. In case of the master's re- 
fusal, they have the privilege of applying to the 
judge of the place, who examines their com- 
plaints, and if well founded, grants them the 
permission required. Such instances are, how- 
ever, very unusual, either because the master, 
on account of his reputation, avoids reducing his 
slaves to this extremity, or that the slaves them- 
selves contract such an attachment to their mas- 
ters, that the greatest punishment inflicted on 
them would be to sell them to others. From 
hence it often happens that those who, for their 
good conduct, have their liberties given them, 
do not wish to avail themselves of it, in order 
not to lose the protection of the house they be- 
long to, where they are certain of always having 
a subsistence furnished them. Masters exercise 
the rights of fathers of families over their slaves, 
in correcting them for their faults ; the kind and 
degree of punishment is left with them when 
they have been guilty of any crime that is not 
capital. Although such a state of servitude 
appears repugnant to natural right, yet society 


derives great advantages from it. Families ar# 
not exposed to the instability nf servants, who, 
considering themselves as strangers, .never be* 
come attached fa the house, and without hesita- 
tion communicate all its secrets. 

The internal commerce of Chili has been 
.hitherto of very little importance, notwithstand- 
ing the advantages that the country offers for itg 
.encouragement. Its principal source, industry, 
.or more properly speaking, necessity, is wanting. 
An extensive commerce is correlative with a 
great population, and in proportion as the latter 
increases, the former will also be augmented.* 

* Hitherto it may be said, that of the two branches that in 
general give birth to commerce, agriculture, and industry, the 
first is that alone which animates the internal commerce of 
Chili, and even that part of the external which is carried on 
with Peru. The working of mines also occupies the attention 
of many in the provinces of €opiapo, Coruiimbo, and Quil- 
lota. But the industry is so trifling that it does not deserve 
the name. Notwithstanding the abundanee of its fruits and 
materials of the first class, as flax, wool, hemp, skins, and 
metals, which might produce a flourishing commerce, it is con- 
ducted but languidly. The inhabitants employ themselves 
only in making ponchos, stockings, socks, carpets, biankefs, 
skin coats, riding saddles; hats, and other small articles, 
chiefly made use of by the common or poorer class of people, 
since those of the middle rank employ European manufac- 
hires. These, but more particularly the sale of hides and 
tanned leather, which they have in great plenty, with that of 
grain and wine, form the whole of the internal commerce of 

827 ' 

A communication by water, which greatly faci- 
litates its progress, has been already commenced. 
In several of the ports barks are employed in the 
transportation of merchandise, which was before 

The external, which is carried on with all the ports of Peru, 
particularly Callao, arises from the exportation of fruits; this 
amounts to seven hundred thousand dollars, serving not only 
to counterbalance the importations from that country, but 
leaving a balance in favour of Chili of two hundred thousand 
dollars annually, according to the statements given in the 
periodical publications of Lima. 

The commerce between Chili and Buenos Ay res is quite 
otherwise, since for the herb of Paraguay alone it is obliged 
to advance three hundred dollars annually, in cash. The 
other articles received from thence are probably paid for by 
those sent thither. 

In the trade with Spain, the fruits received from Chili go 
but a little way inpayment of more than a million of dollars, 
which are received from thence annually in European goods, 
either directly or by the way of Buenos A.yres, and some- 
times from Lima. Gold, silver, and copper, are the articles 
which form the whole of this commerce, since the hides and 
vicugna wool are in such small quantities as to render them of 
little importance. 

The gold, which is coined in the capital, is regulated at five 
thousand two hundred marks annually, whence, by comparing 
the amount shipped with that coined, as no overplus appears, 
jt is concluded that there is no clandestine extraction, not- 
withstanding in bullion and in works of use or ornament a 
very considerable quantity is expended. 

The silver obtained from the mines is calculated at thirty 
thousand marks. Of this amoant twenty-five thousand is 
coined yearly, and the residue employed in the manufacture 
#f table plate, and for various other purposes. The difference 


parried by land upon mules, with great trouMe 

Lnov7 enSe ■,, tte ffierChaBt This b <™"<^ 
W t.o„ wall probably be follows by others 

hi S v" lm P° rtance - Several large ships 

and th TfS 1 thC harb — f Co-ptio P n 

and the mouth of the river Maule. The external 

luTTYI Canied ° n Wkh PefU and Sp-^- 
In the first twenty-three or twenty-four ships of 

fe or m hundred tons each are employed, 

w:ch are partly C hi, iao and parti e ^ an 

These usually make three yoj & , 

they c arrj from Chm wW wL J ^ 

j!' ' ard ' Ch£es ^ «>U> leather, timber to 
budding, copper, and a variety of other articles, 
ad bnng ack In ret siher> J^; ^ ^ 
coUon. The ships receive in exchange 
fo. European merchandise, gold, silver, copper 
vicugna wool, and hides. A trade with the!S 

» the quantity shipped from that coined arises from there- 
cetpts fr„ m rj ma . The ,. em| . ttences rf goW and s . ]ver )o 

fpat^are usually made from Bueuos Ayres ; the tim, bein S 
less bulky, 1S carried by the monthly paekets in sums of two 
or three thousand ounces; as to the second, it is sent in two 
convoy slops „, the summer, by which conveyances gold is also 
renntted. In calculating the gold from the remittances, it 
amounts to six hundred and fifly-six thousand dollars, and the 
s. Ivei -to two hundred and forty-fonr thousand. The copper, 
«'nch ,s extracted from the mines, is estimated from eight to 
•en thousand oaptals. From these data it will not be difficult 
l« torm a general estimate of all that Chili produces annually. 


ladies would be more profitable to the Chilians 
than any other, as their most valuable articles 
have either become scarce, or are not produced 
in that wealthy part of Asia, and the passage, in 
consequence of the prevalence of the south 
winds in the Pacific, would be easy and expe- 
ditious. No money is coined or has currency in 
Chili except gold and silver, a circumstance 
very embarrassing to the internal traffic. Their 
smallest silver coin is one-sixteenth of a dollar, 
and their weights and measures are the same as 
are used in Madrid. 





The original language of Chili, generally 
called the Araucanian, is denominated by the 
natives Chili dugu, the Chilian tongue. The 
alphabet contains the same letters as the Latin, 
except the *, which is i« truth nothing more 
than a compound letter. The s, which has 
been by some -rammarians wry properly called 
a hissing rather thaa a letter, is only to be found 
in about twenty of their words, and never occur* 
at the termination, which gives to their pronun- 
ciation a great degree of fulness. The z is still 
more seldom to be met with. Besides these 
common letters, ttie Chilian has a mute e and a 
peculiar u, like the Greeks and the French : the 
former is designated by the acute, and the latter 
by the grave accent, to distinguish them from 
the common e and m. This u is also frequently 
changed into U in the manner of the modern 
Greeks. It has besides a nasal g and a th, which 

'■'•■■ ' 


is pronounced by pressing the tongue against the 
roof of the mouth ; the latter is frequently 
changed into oh, as chegua for thegua (the dog{ 
In the whole of the Chilian alphabetize is not 
a .single guttural letter or vocal aspirate, a very 
singular drcumstance with uncivilized people 
It is proper to note, that in giving the Chilian 
words the Italian orthography has been adopted. 
All the words of the language terminate in the 
six vowels heretofore noticed, and in the con- 
sonants b, d, f, g, l, m , n, r, and v. There are, of 
course, fifteen distinct terminations, which, with 
their variety, render the language sweet and so- 
norous. The accent is usually placed upon the 
penmtuuate vowel, sometimes on the last but 
never on the antepenult. The radicals, as far as 
can be collected from the vocabularies, which 
have been hitherto very imperfect/amount to one 
thousand nine hundred and seventy-three, and 
are for the greater part either monosyllables or 
dissyllables. I have made use of the above term 
in a much more limited sense than many who 
improperly call all those words radicals that in 
any mode produce others. Proceeding upon so 
false a principle, they make some languages con- 
tain thirty or forty thousand roots, which must 
be considered a grammatical paradox. The 
roots of a language are those simple primitive 
expressions, which, neither directly nor indirectly 
derived from any other, produce various words, 


that afterwards extend themselves into a variety 
of different forms. Even in the most copious 
languages,, as the Greek and Latin, the number 
of these roots is very limited. As far as we have 
been able to discover, the radical Chilian words 
have no analogy with those of any other known 
idiom, though the language contains a number 
of Greek and Latin words very little varied, as 
may be seen in the following Table : 





to increase 












in truth 



to shine 



to pulverise 






a stream 



to whip, &c, &c. 





to burn 

Cup a 


to desire 



to feast 



to weep 



active or swift 








Man us 

the right 



to drink 


Vale re 

to be worth 



to be able 



one, &c. &c. 


This, however, is probably only the result of 
;a# accidental combination, for the opinion that 
they have "been derived from the Spanish is utterly 
destitute of foundation, the nation being for the 
most part unacquainted with it, whereas these 
words are to be found in the earliest vocabularies 
of the Chilian language. 

The Chilian nouns arc declined with a single 
declension, or, to speak with more precision, 
they are all undeclinable, except by the addition 
of various articles or particles, which mark the 
number arid case. They resemble the Greek 
nouns in having three numbers, the singular, the 
dual, and the plural, as will appear in the fol- 
lowing example : 



Cara, the 







a Cara. 






Nora. Cara+egu, the two cities. A ecus. Cara-egu. 

Gen. Cara-egu-ni. Voc. a Cara-egu. 

Dat. Cara-egu-meu. Abl. Cara-egu^nn* 


Nom. pu-Cara, the cities 
Gen. pu- Cara-ni. 
Oat. pu-Cara- mm. 

Accus. pu-Cara. 
Voc. a pu-Cara. 
Abl. pu-Cara-mo. 


Instead of pn, the discriminative mark of the 
plural, the particles ica or egen may be used 
affixed to the noun, or que placed between the 
adjective and substantive when they come to- 
o-ether. Thus Cava will make in the plural 
either Caraica, or Caraegen, or Cumeque Cava, 
the good cities. 

From hence it will be seen that, contrary to 
the practice in the modern languages of Europe, 
the article in the Chilian is afnxed to the noun. 
This mode of declension sometimes occurs in the 
Greek and Latin languages, in which we meet 
with a few nouns declined in this manner, though 
more variously, as musa in Latin, and soma in 
Greek. The Chilian abounds with adjectives 
both primitive and derivative. The latteflr are 
formed from every part of speech by certain in- 
variable rules, as from tue, earth, comes tuetu, 
terrestrial ; from quimen, to know, quimchi, wise ; 
and these, by the interposition of the particle no 9 
beco :iie negative, as tuenotu, not terrestrial; 
quimnochi, ignorant. Although these adjectives 
have all different terminations, they are, never- 
theless, like the English adjectives, unsusceptible 
of number, or of gender. The same is the case 
with the participles and the derivative pronouns, 
from whence it may be said that the Chilian 
possesses but one gender. Whether this defect 
is real or only apparent, it is well compensated 
by the advantage which the language possesses 



of rendering any one secure against the com- 
mission of a grammatical error, either in writing' 
or in speaking, as whenever it becomes necessary 
to distinguish the sexes, the word alca is used to 
denote the masculine, and domo the feminine 

The comparative is formed, as in most of the 
living languages, by prefixing to the positive the 
particle jod or doi, signifying more, and to the 
superlatives the adverbs cad Or mu, as doichu, 
more limpid j friuliu, most limpid. The Chilian 
wants the diminutives and augmentatives, but 
these, as in the French, are supplied by the ad- 
jectives pichi, little, and buta, great. Diminu- 
tives are also formed by changing a letter of a 
harsh 4 sound for one more harmonious, as votun, 
son; vochiun, little son. The primitive pro- 
nouns are, inche,! ; eimi, you ; teye, which, &c. 
The relatives are, iney, who ; diem, what ; ta or 
ga, that, &c. The verbs terminate in the in- 
finitive, as in the Greek and German, in n, with 
this difference, that all the German verbs end in 
en, and the Greek in in, except in those cases 
where they are contracted ; whereas the Chilian 
terminate in the syllables an, en, in, on, un, and 
un. They are all, nevertheless, without excep- 
tion, regulated by a single conjugation, and are 
of three kinds, active, passive, and impersonal, 
with three numbers, the singular, the dual, and 
the plural. They have all the Latin moods and 


tenses, with three or four others, which may be 
denominated mixed. 

All the tenses of the indicative produce parti- 
ciples and gerunds both in active and passive 
verbs. The terminations of the present tense of 
each mood serve for the other tenses of the same 
mood, which are distinguished from one another 
by certain characteristic particles, as que in the 
second present tense, 1m in the perfect, uye in 
the perfect, and a in the first future. The com- 
pound and mixed tenses are formed by the union 
of the same particles. These characteristic par- 
ticles are applicable to all the moods, as well of 
active as of passive and impersonal verbs. 

Verbs passive are formed by placing the auxi- 
liary 'gen, to be, between the radical and the final 
n of the verb, and is conjugated with the same 
terminations as the active. The impersonal are 
formed by annexing the particle am to the radical 
word, or to the denotement of time. This simple 
method will appear more clearly in the conju- 
gation of the verb ehtn, to give, which will 
serve as a model for all the others, without ex* 



Present Tense. 
Sing. Elun, I give^ Dual. Eluyu, we two give. 

Eluimi, thou givest. Eluimu, you two give. 

Elui, he gives, Eluigu, they two give, 

TOL. lh 2 


Plural. Eluign, we give. 
Eluimen, ye give. 
Eluigen, they give. 

Second Present, 
Sing. Eluchen, I give. Eluchemi, thou givest, &cc* 

Sing. Elulun, I did give. Elubuimi, thou didst give, Sec. 

Sing. Eluuyen, I gave, Eluuyeimi, thou gavest, &c. 

Sing. Eluuyebun, I had given. Eluuyebuimi, thou hadst given, 


jF7rs£ Future. 
feing. JE/aaa, I will give. Eluami, thou wilt give, &c. 

Second Future. 
$ing. Eluuyean, I shall have Eiuuyeai?ni i thou shalt have 
given. given, & c . 

First Mixed. 

Sing. Eluabun, I had to give. Eluabuimi, thou hadst to give. 

Second Mixed. 
Sing. Eluuyealun, I ought to Eluuyeabuimi, thou oughtest 

have had to give 

to have had to give, &c. 

* The first present of all the verbs is regularly used as the 
compound preterite; thus elun signifies I give and I have 
$iven. The second present is that which denotes simply the 
present moment* 


Sing. Eluchi, let me give. Dual. Eluyu, let us two give, 
Eluge, give thou. Elumu, do you two give. 

Elupe, let him give. Elugu, let those two give 

Plural. Eluign, let us give, 
Elumen, give ye. 
Elugen, let them give. 


Present Tense. 
•Sing. Eluli, if I may give. Dual. Elulin, if we two may give. 
Elnlma, if thoumayest Elulmu, if you two may 

give § ive - 

£/«/*, if he may give; Elulgu, if we two may 

Plural. Elulign, if we may give. 
Elulmen, if ye may give. 
Elulgen, if we may give. 


Sing. Elubnlhifl might give. Eluhulmi, if thou mightest 

give, &c. 

Perfect. First Future. 

Sing. Eluuyeli, if I may have Sing. £Zwa/i, if I shall give, 

Pluperfect. Second Future. 

Sing, Eluuyeluli, if I might Sing. Eluuyeali, if I shall have 
have given. given. 

First Mized. Second Mixed. 

Sing. Eluabuli, if I had to give. Sing. Eluyealuli, ifl should 

have to give. 



The optative is formed of the subjunctive, or 
of the two mixed tenses of the indicative, with 
the desiderative particles vclem, vel, or chi an- 
nexed, as cluli vclem ! God grant that I may 
give; eluabun chi ! Would to God that I had 
to give ! 

The affirmative infinitive is not distinguishable 
from the first persons singular of the tenses of 
the indicative, as is the case in most of the pri- 
mitive languages, and likewise in the English. 
Thus all the nine tenses of the indicative have 
their peculiar infinitives, and whenever it be- 
comes necessary to make a distinction between 
them, it is done by prefixing some determinative 

First Present. Perfect. 

Elulu, he or that who gives. Eluuyelu, he who gave. 

Second Present. 
Eluquelu, he who gives. 

Elululut he who did give. 

Second Future. 

Eluuyehulu, he who had given. 

First Future. . 

Elualu, he who shall ijive. 
First Mixed. 

Bluuyealu, he who shall have Elualulu, he who shall have 
.given. t0£ive> 



Second Mixed. 
Eluuyealulu, he who should have given. 



First Present. Second Present. 

Eluyumi'gWmg. Elual, for to give, &c. 

Eluyulum, when giving, &c. 



Present Tense. 

Sing. Elugen, I am given. Dual. Elugeyu, we two are 

Elugeimi, thou art given. given, &c. 

Elugei, he is given. 

Elugelum, I was given, &c. &c, 

First Present. Imperfect. 

Elugelu, given. 

Elugelulu, that was given, &c, 

Second Present. Perfect. 

Eluel, given.. Eluluel, that was given, 



First Present. 

$luam> that is giving. 

Second Present. 
Ejuchodm, that is giving. 


First Future. 
Eluayam, that shall be given. 

Second Future. 

Eluuyeayam, that should be 

First Mixed. 

Eluluam, that was giving. Eluahuam, that had to give. 

Perfect. Second Mixed. 

Eluuyeam, that was given. Eluuyeabuam, that should hav$ 

to give. 

Pluperfect. , 

Eluuyeluam, that had given. 

Elupeam, let us give. 

Present. Imperfect. 

Eluleam, that we may give. Eluhuleam, that we should give. 

Instead of the impersonal verb, the third persor* 
singular of the passive may be used impersonally; 
in the manner of the Latin. 

The above conjugation becomes negative by 
the admission of the particle la in the indicative. 

qui in the imperative, which then takes the ter- 
mination of the conjunctive, and no in the sub- 
junctive and infinitive moods, as in the following 
example l 

Elulan, I do not give. ***** thou dost not give, &c. 


Eluquili, let me not give, &c. 

Elunoli, if I do not give. Elunolmi, if tliou dost not give, &e. 

Elunon, not to give, cU. 

This negative conjugation is much used in all 
the verbs, but it should be observed that in using 
it whenever two a% or any other monotonous 
vowels are brought together, a y is placed be- 
tween them to avoid harshness, as in the future 
negative elulayun, not to give. This method 
gives rise to a number of very singular verbs; 
as, pilan, I deny ; gelan, I am not ; pelan, I do 
not see, &c. From hence also comes Ian, to die, 
that is,' to be nothing ; Man, I shall not die. 

From the above remarks, it will be seen that 
almost the whole structure of the Chilian con- 
jugation consists in the use of the participles, 
which may be called regulators of time, as either 


singly or Combined they vary and modify the 
tenses. They also perfectly supply the place of 
the modem auxiliary verbs. Thus the plu- 
perfect, participating of the imperfect and per- 
ffect, is composed of the particles of both. The 
future perfect is likewise formed from the cha- 
racteristic particles of the perfect and the future, 
and combines the signification of both. The 
same may be observed with regard to the mixed, 
which adopt the particles or augmentative syl- 
lables of those tenses that approach nearest them 
m signification, the first using those of the future 
and imperfect, and the second those of the per- 
fect, the future, and the imperfect. The same 
system, though less obvious, occurs with little 
variation in the Latin conjugations, the pluper- 
fect amaveram being apparently composed of 
the perfect arriayi and the imperfect eram, and 
amavero of the same perfect and the future ero. 

Having given a succinct view of the first in- 
flexions of the verb, I shall proceed to notice 
the second in which it is equally abundant. 
Nouns ending in on,* are formed by changing 
the final n of the infinitive into voe or ve, at 
eluvoc or eluve, the giver. Those implying action 
terminate in ue, al, om, mi, and urn. The in- 
finitive itself becomes a noun, as ilucan, signifies 
both to pass and a passage. Those calledln the 

* The Spanish or Latin termination is here meant. 


Latin nouns in bilis, are formed by the inter- 
position of the particle vol with a participle, as 
>eluvALlu, donable, (or that which maybe given), 
ayuvAUu, amiable, and become negatives by the 
farther interposition of the particle no. Ab- 
stract nouns are very frequent, and generally 
terminate in gen, as ayuvalgen, amiableness, bu- 
tagen, greatness. The compounds, which in Latin 
end in etum, and Italian in eto, as castagneto,* 
terminate in the Chilian in ntu ; rumentu, a bed 
of flowers ; curantu, a place full of stones ; 
millantu, a mine of gold. 

The simple structure only of the verb has hi- 
therto been noticed. To point out the several 
combinations it admits, would require a laboured 
treatise, admitting that each simple verb be- 
comes, by its union with various particles, the 
fertile root of numerous other verbs. Of these 
particles, there are some which, by being pre- 
fixed, perform the office of the Latin preposi- 
tions; others are interwoven with the verb itself, 
and give force to, or gracefully vary its signifi- 
cation. The following examples of the latter, 
taken from the numerous derivatives of the. verb 
dun, will suffice to explain this peculiar forma- 
tion. Eluclen, to be giving ; eluguen, to give 

elullen, to give in earnest ; 

more; eluduamen, to wish to give 
to come givin: 

* A grove of chesnut trees. 


duyaun, to go giving ; elumen, to go to give ♦ 
elumon, to have occasion to give; elupan, to 
come to give ; elupen, to doubt to gi\e ; elupran, 
to give to no purpose ; elupun 3 to pass in giving ; 
elurquen, to appear to give ; eluremun, to give 
unexpectedly ; elulun, to turn to give ; eluvalen, 
to be able to give ; elumepran, to go to give in 
Tain, &c. 

Two., three,, or more of these particles, when 
combined, form verbs of such a length as to 
comprehend an entire sentence, as iduanclolaroin, 
I do not wish to eat with him ; pemepravin, I 
went to see him in vaio. The first is composed 
of live distinct words, in, to eat ; duan 3 wish ; 
do 3 with; la, not; vi 3 him or it 3 and is conju- 
gated through all its parts like elun 3 as iduan* 
dolavimi, iduamclolavi, 8$c. This kind of ele- 
gant compound is very common in the Chilian. 

Verbs are also formed hy a happy combination 
of others, as from ayen 3 to laugh, and thipan, to 
go out, is derived ayetlripan, to go out laughing; 
quindugun, to know how to talk ; pepimedan, to 
be able to present, &c. Verbs neuter become 
active, and active relative by the use of the par- 
ticles Cfij, ica> U, Id, ma, and u 3 as in the follow- 
ing instance ; allium, to fatigue one's self; athu- 
can, to fatigue ; gen, to be ; gein 3 to give being 
io ; jegnenman, to venerate him. From hence it 
will readily be inferred, that the poetical and rhe* 
torical expressions of this language are forcible 


and pathetic ; but, in order to be able to form a 
proper idea of its copiousness and elegance, it is 
necessary to hear an Araucanian deliver a public 


The barbarous languages are generally very 
deficient in connective particles, but the Chilian, 
on the contrary, abounds with prepositions, ad- 
verbs, interjections, and conjunctions. The same 
prepositions, which in the Latin are placed after 
the noun, occupy a similar position in the Chilian, 
as pie, towards; cutu, until; via, therefore. The 
compound adverbs are formed by adding to the 
adjectives, and also to the verbs gechi or quechi, 
as thepengechi, cheerfully; cumequechi, sponta- 
neously, &c. These are rendered negative by 
the introduction of the particle no, as thepenge- 
nochi. The numerals end in Chi, mel, omita ; as 
marichi, ten times; this latter adverb is also 
used, as it was by the Pythagoreans, in an un, 
limited sense, as marichi Hay an, to eat no more. 

The Chilian contains a variety of interjections: 
the principal of which are hue, ah ! lue, an ex- 
pression of joy ; ema, of affection ; veicu, of ad- 
miration ; eu, of affliction ; ahitlii, of pain ; uya, 
of indignation ; tutui, of contempt ; chioqui, of 
ridicule ; sum, of affirmation, &c. Among the 
conjunctions are cat, notwithstanding; chei) 
cambe, or; into, tume, if; cam, am, perhaps; 
rume> although; ca, so that ; uelu, but : petw, 



also ; ckemmOj because; mai, yes ; no, mu, no ; 
ina-cai, moreover; deuma, after that; ula, to 
the end that. It contains also many expletory 
particles, as chi; ga, maga, pichita, cachia, &c. 

■ The syntax differs not materially from the con- 
struction of the European languages. The sub- 
ject, whether active or passive, may be placed 
either before or after the verb. Mi peni aculei, 
your brother has not come, or aculei mi peni, are 
used indifferently, as are pevin apo, I have seen 
the governor, or apo pevin. The genetive, or at 
least its article, is commonly placed before the 
noun that governs it. The adjective is always 
placed before its substantive. The articles are 
sometimes omitted for the sake of brevity or ele- 
gance, as millalonco, bead of gold ; at other 
times they are used instead of the substantive, as 
Columilla agen, the vassals of Coluniilla. 

The verb is frequently placed in the singular, 
although its proper number is the dual, or plural, 
as is also common in the Greek in cases of neutral 
nouns, as pu cona cupai, the soldiers have come. 
The auxiliary added to the infinitive of other 
verbs forms the gerund, as gumangei, he is 
weeping. The same infinitive, by being placed 
before the noun that governs it, makes a gerund 
of the genetive ; as pin-antu, it is the time of 
speaking: but whenever it indicates motion it 
admits the articles ni 3 mcu, or mo, as ni pagitum 



'cupan, I come to hunting lions. The participle 
passive is also employed for this purpose with the 
same articles. 

Participles and gerunds are very frequent in 
this language, or rather, they occur in almost 
every sentence ; whence all the offices of the in- 
finitive and the relative are usually performed by 
the participle or the gerund. 

Laconism is the principal characteristic of the 
Chilian. From hence arises the almost constant 
practice of including the passive case in its verb, 
which, when thus combined, is conjugated in 
every respect as it is when by itself. A Chilian 
rarely says elun ruca, I give the house, but in 
order to express himself with precision he will 
immediately form both words into the verb elu~ 
mean, which signifies the same thing. They 
pursue a similar method with the pronouns, 
eluun,_ I give myself ; eluen, I give you ; eluvin, 
I give him or them. This manner of arranging 
the pronouns, which has some resemblance to the 
Hebrew, is called by the Chilian grammarians, 
transition. Of this they distinguish seven kinds, 
which render the attainment of the language 
very difficult at first, from the particularity that 
is requisite to be observed in the use of them. 

From the same principle proceeds the no less 
singular practice, already noticed, of converting 
all the* parts of speech into verbs, in such a 
manner that the whole knowledge of the Chiliaa 

: I 


language may be said to consist in the manage- 
ment of the verbs. The relatives, the pronouns^ 
the prepositions, the adverbs, the numerals, and 
in fine all the other particles as well as the nouns 
are subject to this metamorphosis, as chiu 3 what ? 
chiumen, what's to be done ? mivu, how many ? 
mvvui, how many are they ? eimimolan, I have 
no occasion for you ; minclie, under, minchen, to 
be under ; melt, four, melin, to be four ; doy, 
more, doin, to be more ; vem 3 like, vemen, to be 
like another. 

Proper names are also susceptible of this ele- 
gance. Thus from Pedro, is formed the verb 
petron, to be Pedro ; Petrobui, was Pedro. In 
consequence of this singular variation, the sub- 
stantives and adjectives produce some very 
curious verbs; as from pulli or pidlu, the soul, 
is derived pullun, to apply the whole soul, to pay 
the greatest attention ; in like manner from then, 
time comes, thenen, to arrive in time ; from re s 
pure, relcn, to do only one thing, &c. Owing to 
this property the translation of European works 
into the Chilian is very easy, in which, instead of 
losing any of their spirit and elegance, they 
acquire a degree of precision even superior to 
the originals. This, among other instances that 
might be mentioned, is strongly evinced in the 
Christian Thoughts of the celebrated Bouhours, 
which was translated in the year seventeen hun- 
dred and thirteen. There can be no better test 


of a language than its translations, as its com- 
parative richness or poverty is rendered more 
apparent in this mode than in any other. 

Another remarkable property of the Chilian 
is the frequent use of abstract words in a pe- 
culiar manner. Thus, instead of saying pu 
Huinca, the Spaniards, they commonly say Huin- 
cagen, the Spaniolity; tamen cuiagen, your trio, 
that is, you other three ; epu tamen cajugen layai, 
two of you other six will die, literally, two of 
your sixths. The verb pin, which signifies to 
say, is repeated in almost every sentence in 
familiar conversation, as is usual with the lower 
class of the Bolognese ; " pu auca cuniegei, pi; 
dachclai, pi ; dagechelai caU pivin : the Arauca- 
nians are good, says he ; they do no harm, says 
he ; then they ought not to be ill-treated, says 
he." An ambassador or messenger always ex- 
presses himself in the very words of those who 
send him, as was customary among the Hebrews 
and the ancient Greeks. 

Many more reflections might be made upon 
the simple structure of this language ; but as 
these will readily occur to those who have at- 
tended i to the remarks already made, It will be 
unnecessary to dwell longer upon the subject. 
From what knowledge we possess of it, the 
Chilian appears to combine the genius of the 
primitive language of the East, with that of the 


ancient and modern European. It is obvious 
from its very structure that it is an original lan- 
guage, and it is a circumstance not a little re- 
markable, that it should have produced no par- 
ticular dialect, notwithstanding it has extended 
itself over a space of one thousand two hundred 
miles, among so many insubordinate tribes, 
wholly destitute of all kind of literary inter- 
course. The Chilians who live in the 24th de- 
gree of latitude, speak the same language as 
the natives of the 45th ; nor is there any essential 
difference between that spoken by the islanders, 
the mountaineers, or the inhabitants of the 
plains : the Boroans and Ilicurans alone some- 
times change the t into s. The Chilotes have 
adopted several Spanish words, but it has been 
more owing to a wish to flatter ther masters, 
than to any preference of them to their own. 
Were the Chilian a meagre language, its immu- 
tability might be attributed to its paucity of 
words, which in such cases, being intended to 
express only the most simple and common ideas, 
do not readily admit of change ; but as, on the 
contrary, it abounds with words, it is wonderful 
that it has not been divided into a number of 
subordinate dialects, as has been the case with 
other primitive languages that have been in any 
considerable degree extended. 




Quigne, one Mari-quigne, eleven. 

Epu, two Marie-pu, twelve, &c. 

Culdy three Epumari, twenty. 

Melt, four Culamari, thirty. 

Quechu, five Melimari, forty, &c. 

<7ayK, six Patacc, one hundred. 

Relghe, seven Epupataca, two hundred. 

Para, eight Culapataca, three hundred, &c. 

Aylla, nine Huaranca, one thousand. 

Mari, ten Epuhuaranca, two thousand, 

&c. &c. 

Quignechi, Quignemel, Quignemita, once. 
Epuchi, Epumal, Epumeta x twice, &c. 

Z7«en, Unelelu, Quignelelu, Quignegetu, Quignegentu, Quig- 
mentu, once. 
Epulelu, Epugelu, Epugentun, Epuntu, &c. twice. 

Calique, Mollquigne, one by one. 
Epuque, Mollepu, two by two. 

Quignen, to be one ; Quignelian, to join ; JEpKW, to be two, 
&c. &c. 

Quignegen, unity ; Epugen, duality ; Culagen, trinity, &e. 

Quignelque, several ; Epulgen, about two 5 Culalque, about 






••• fc«fii 


To the preceding Account of the Language of the 
Araucanos, which is common to the Moluches, that 
of Falkner, the Missionary, in his Description of 
Patagonia, may properly be added. 
ec The nouns have only one declination, and are 
all of the common gender. The dative, accusa- 
tive, and ablative cases, have all the same termi- 
nation, with their suffix or postposition. There 
are but two numbers, singular and plural ; the 
dual being expressed by placing the word epu 
(which signifies two) before the word : but the 
pronouns have all the three numbers. The ad- 
jectives are put before the substantives, and do 
not vary their terminations, either in case or num- 
ber: as, 

Cume good, 

Cume huentu » good man, 

Cume huentu eng'n good men. 

Singular. Plural* 

JV. Huentu, the man, N. Pu huentu, or •» fc . ^ 

G. Huentuni, of the man, &c. huentu eng'n 5 

B. Huentumo, &• Pu huentu, of the men 9 

A.Huentumo, and so on, as in the singular. 

V, Huentu, 
A. Huentumo-, 
or Huentu engu, 





T'va or T'vachi 










Inche quisu, 



he alone, ot 

I myself, 
we two, 
we many. 

Eimu 9 


And } in the same manner^ 
thou, Eim'n .. you many, 

you two, 

For pronouns possessive is used the genitive, 
or sign of the genitive, of the pronouns ; ni, 
mine; mi, thine. Likewise m'ten, only; used 
sometimes as an adjective or pronoun, and, at 
other times, as an adverb. 

The verbs have only one conjugation, and are 
never irregular or defective. They are formed 
from any part of speech, either by giving it the 
termination of a verb, or adding to it the verb 
substantive gen, or, as it is pronounced, 'ngen, 
which answers to the Latin verb sum, es,fui> &c. 


1. P'lle, 
Pllen, or Pllengen, 
Plley, or Pllengey, 

2. Cume, 


I am near, 

he is near. 


to be good. 

3. Ata, 
Ata.n y 
Atal'n, or Atalcan, 

Evil or bad. 

to be bad, 

to corrupt or make bad. 

The verbs have three numbers, singular, dual, 
and plural; and as many tenses as in the Greek 
tongue; all of which they form by interposing 

i|3 ■ 


certain particles before the last letter of the indi- 
cative, and before the last syllable of the sub- 
junctive: as, 

to give. 

Present tense, 








First Aorist, 


Second Aorist, 


First Future, 


Second Future, 


In the subjunctive mood they terminate with 
the particle U, striking off the letter n in the in- 
dicative, and varying all the tenses as before : as, 

Present tense 9 








First Aorist, 


Second Aorist, 


First Future, 


Second Future, 


N. B. The Huilliches frequently use, instead 
of eluyeen, in the perfect tense of the indicative, 
or eluyeeli, in that of the subjunctive, eluvin and 

I remarked that, for the imperative, they fre- 
quently used the future of the indicative, and 
sometimes in the third person ; as, Elupe, Let 
him give, 


A Moloclie Indian, eating an ostrich's egg, 
and wanting salt, I heard him say, " Chasimota 
iloavinquin," Let me eat it with salt. Now ilo- 
avin is the first future, with the particle vi 
interposed, to signify it, I do not know whether 
quin is any thing more than a particle of orna- 
ment; as in the word chasimota; where the con- 
cluding syllable ta is useless, but for the sake of 
the sound ; as chasimo, without any addition, is 
the ablative case of chasi, salt. 

The tenses are conjugated, through all their 
numbers, with these terminations in the indica- 
tive present ; 

Sing; » imi y 

Dual iu imu ingu 

Plural in im'n ing n 



Elun Eluimi 



Eluin Eluimu 

Eluin gu 


Eluin Eluim'n 





1% limi 



liu limu 


Plural iiin lim'n 




Eluli Elulimi 



Eluliu Elulimu 

Elu lingu 


Eluliin Elulim'n 

Elulingn. , 1 




In this manner all the other tenses are conju- 

N. B The Second Aorist and the Second 
Future are only used by the Picunches, and not 
by the Huilliches. 

The infinitive mood is formed of the first per- 
son of the indicative., with the genitive of the 
primitive pronoun put before, or a possessive 
pronoun, to signify the person that acts or suffers^ 
and may be taken from any of the tenses : as, 

Ni elun, 
Ni elulun, 
Ni eluvin, &c. 

I to give, 
thou to give, 
he to give. 

The other possessives are mi 3 thine ; and n' 3 
his ; for these are only used in the singular. 

There are two participles, formed in the 
same manner as the infinitive, to be conjugated 
through all the tenses ; the one active^ the other 
passive : 

Active, Elulu, the person giving. 

Passive, Eluel, the thing given. 




he that did give, 


he that has given, 


he that will give, 


he that was to give, 


the thing that was given, 

E luyeel, 

the thing that has been given,, 

Elual, &c. 

the thing that will be given. 


Of all these, and of the aetive verbs, passives 
are formed, by adding the verb substantive, gen ; 
in which case, in all the tenses, the variation or 
declension changes the verb substantive, the ad- 
jective verb remaining invariable. 
Mugen, 1 have given, 

Elugebun, I was given, 

Elugeli, / I can be given, 

Elungeuyeeli, 1 may have been given, 

Elungeali, &c. I shall have been given. 

Another accident, which the verbs in this lan- 
guage suffer, is that of transition : whereby they 
signify as well the person that acts, as him on 
whom the action passes, by the interposition or 
addition of certain determinate particles to ex- 
press it. This is common to them with those of 
Peru ; but the latter use those which are more 
difficult, and in a greater number. I do not 
think that the languages of the nations of the 
Puelches, of the Chaco, or the Guaranies, have 
this particular property. I do not believe I can 
recollect them ail ; but I shall endeavour to give 
the best account I can of these transitions. 

The transitions are six in number ; 

From me to thee ox you, 
From you to me, 
From him to me, 
From him to you, 
From me or you to him, 
A ft 4 


.... . • - - - . . ■ 


And the mutual, when it is reciprocal on both 


The first transition is expressed by eymi, eymu, 

and eim'n, in the indicative; and elmi, elmu, and 

elm'n, m the subjunctive; and this runs through 

all the tenses : as, 

Elun, I give, 

Elueymi, I give to you, 

Elueymu^ I give to you two, 

Elueim'n, I or we give to you many 

And in the subjunctive, 


With their derivatives, the other tenses. 

The second transition is from you to me, and Is 
expressed by the particle en ; as eluen, you give 
to me ; which has elueiu and eluein, dual and 

The third transition from him to me is, 

Sing. Elumon, 

Dual Elumoiu, 

Plural Elumoin (when we are many.) 

In the subjunctive it is, 

Sing. Elumoli, 

Dual Elumoliyu, 

Plural Elumoliin. 

The fourth transition, From him to thee, is 
formed by adding eneu to the first person sin- 
gular; as, 

Elueneu, he gives to thee • 

And eymu mo, eim'n mo, to the dual and plural ; 

And in the subjunctive, 

Elmi mo, 
Elmu mo, 
Eim'n mo. 

The fifth transition, from me to thee, to this, 
or that, or him, is formed by the interposition of 

the particle vi ; as, 

I give it, or give him, 
thou givest him, 
he giveth him, 

we or you two give to him, 
or give it. 
t we many give to him,or give it. 








The subjunctive is Eluvili. 

This I perceive to be something equivocal 
with the perfect tense of the Huilliches : yet 
they like to use it, though they themselves know 
the impropriety of it. Nor is this the only ground 
of equivocation in their tongue, which is found 
especially in the prepositions ; where one having 
many significations, the meaning is oftentimes 
very much confused ; as may be seen in the de- 
clination of their nouns. 

The sixth and last transition is conjugated 
through all the numbers, moods, and tenses, in 
the same maimer as the simple verbs, and is 


formed by the interposition of the particle huu 9 
or, as it is pronounced, wu ; as, 

TLluhwn, or > . 

„ > I give to myself, 

Euwun, S 

dyuwimi, tliou lovest thyself, 

Ayuhui, he loveth himself, 

Ayuhuim'n, &c. you love one another. 

They have another particular mode of com- 
pounding verbs, altering their significations, 
making affirmatives negatives, neuters actives, 
and of signifying and expressing how and in 
what manner the thing is done, by the interpo- 
sition of prepositions, adverbs, adjectives, &c. as, 

Cupan, to come, 

Na u cup an, to come downwards, 

Nog'n, to fall, 

Nogcumen, to make to fall, 

Payllacnon, to put one's mouth upwards ; 

from paillcij mouth upwards, c'non, to put. 

to rebel, 

to rebel over again, 

to make to rebel, 

death or to die, 

to kill, 

to kill Indians : 







from langm'n, to kill, and che, Indian or man, 
Ayun, to love, 

Ayulan, not to love. 

Pen signifies to see ; pevin is, I saw him ; tiemgCj 
on this mat ler ; and la is the negative. These 


words are compounded into one, thus, pevemge- 
lavin, I saw him not on this manner. 

The numeral words in this language are com- 
plete, and may he used to describe any number 

Quine, one, Melt, four, Cayu, six, 

Epu, two, Kechu, five, Selge, seven, 
Quila, three, 

Mari (or Massi, as the Huilliches have it) ten, 

The intermediate numbers are composed as follows: 
Pataca, a hundred, Huaranca, a thousand. 

Massi quine, eleven, Epu massi epu, twenty-two, 

Massi epu, twelve, Epu massi quila, twenty-three, 

thirteen, Quila pataca, three hundred, 

twenty, Selge pataca, seven hundred. 

Massi quila, 
Epu massi, 


Chay, or Chayula, 


to-day, or presently, 
T'vou, here, 

Vellu, there, 

Pile, near, 

Allu mapu afar off, 

jViztt, under, or downwards, 

Huenu, above, 

Pule, against, 

Allu pule, distant, 

Chumgechi, on what manner, 

Vemgechi or vemge, on this manner, 

C the Latin prepositions, in, con- 
Mo, or meu, < tra, cum, per, ob, propter, 
^ intra, 
Cay, and Chay t placed after a noun, or, alone, and, perhaps, 
Huecu, without. 


To give some further idea of this language, I 
add the following specimens of it : 

Santa crux ni gnelmeu, inchin in pu 
By the sign of the holy cross, from our 
caynemo montulmoin, Dios, inchin in 
enemies deliver us, O God, our 
Apo ; Ckao, VotcKm cay, Spiritu Santo cay, 
Lord ; the Father, and Son, and the Holy Ghost, 
ni wimeu. Amen, 
in the name of. Amen. 

Inchin in Chao^ huenumeuia mHeymi, 

Our Father, in Heaven thou that art, 
ufckingepe mi wi; eymi mi toquin 
hallowed be thy name ; thy kingdom 
inchinmo cupape; eymi mi piel % 
to us may it come ; thy will, 
chumgechi vemgey huenu-mapumo, 
as it is done in Heaven, 

vemgechi cay vemengepe tue-mapumo ; &c» 
so likewise may it be done on earth ; &c. 


Mupiltun Dios, Chaomo vilpepilvoe, huenu 
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, of Heaven 
vemvoe, tue vemvoe cay ; inchin in Ap* 

the maker, and of earth the maker also ; in our Lord 
Jesu Christomo cay, veyni m'ten Votch'm, tsfc 
Jesus Christ also, his only son, &c. 

Q. Chumten Dios rriley ? How many Gods are there I 
A. Quine m'ten. One only. 

Q Cheu m'ley ta Dios? Where is God % 


A. HuenU'mapumo, tue-mapumo, In Heaven, in earth, 
vilUmapumo sume cay, and in all the world wheresoever. 

Q. Iney cam Dios ? Who is God ] 

A. Dios Chao, God the Father, Dios Votch'm, God the Sod, 
Dios Spiritu Santo ; cay quila Persona geyum, 
God the Holy Ghost ; and being three Persons, 

quiney Dios m'ten, are one God only. 
Q. Chumgechi, quila Persona geyum, quine m'ten ta Dios f 
How, being three persons, God is one alone 1 

A. Tvachi quila Persona quine 
These three Persons have one only 
gen-n'gen, veyula quine mien ta Dios, 
Being, for this God is one alone. 

These specimens are accommodated to the 
Indian expression, and intermixed with a few 
Spanish words, where the Indian idiom is insuf- 
ficient, or might give a false idea. And this, 
with the short vocabulary annexed, may suffice 
to give a small but imperfect notion of this lan- 

I omit several common words, because they 
have been already explained. 

P'LLU, the soul, a spirit. 
Lonco, the head, the hair. 
Az, the face. 
N'ge, the eyes. 
Wun or Huun, the mouth. 
Gehuun, the tongue. 
Yu, the nose. 
Voso, the teeth, the bones, 
Anca, the body. 
Pue, the belly. 


Cuugh, the hand. 
Namon, the foot. 
Pinque, the heart. 
P'nen, a child. 

Nahue, a daughter. 
Peni, a brother. 
Penihuen, own brothers. 
Huinca, a Spaniard. 
Seche, a neat Indian. 
Huenuy, a friend. 


Caynle, aw enemy. 

Huincha, a head-fillet. 

Makun, a mantle. 

Lancattu, glass beads. 

Cofque, bread. 

Ipe, food. 

In, or ipen, to eat. 

Ho, flesh, 

Hon, to eat flesh. 

Putun, drink, to drink. 

Putumum, a cup. 

Chilca, writing. 

Chilean, to write. 

Sengu, a word, language ; also 
a thing. 

Huayqui, a lance. 

Huayquitun, to lance. 

Chinu, a knife, a sword. 

Chingoscun, to wound. 

Chingosquen, to be wounded. 

Conan, a soldier. 

Conangean, he that is to be a 
sol dier. 

Amon, to walk or go. 

Anun, to sit. 

Anupeum, a seat or stool. 

Anunmahuun, to feel inwardly. 

Poyquelhuun, to feel, or per- 

Con'n, Ifo enter. 

Tipan, to go out. 

Cupaln, to bring. 

Entun, to take away. 

Aseln, to be averse. 

Aselgen, to hate. 

M'ien, to be, to possess. 

Mongen, lite, to live. 

Mongetun, to revive. 

Suam, the will. 

Suamtun, to will. 

Pepi, power. 

Pepilan, to be able. 

Quimn, knowledge, to know. 

Quimeln, to learn. 

Quimelcan, to teach. 

Pangi, a lion. 

Choique, an ostrich. 

Achahual, a cock or hen. 

Malu, a large lizard or iguana. 

Cusa, a stone, an egg. 

Saiguen, a flower. 

Milya, gold. 

Lien, silver. 

Cullyin, money, payment. 

Cullingen, to be rich. 

Cunnubal, poor, miserable, an 

Cum panilhue (red metal) cop- 

Chos panilhue (yellow metal) 

Gepun, colour, or painting. 

Saman, a trade, an artificer. 

Mamel, a tree, wood. 

Mamel-saman, a carpenter. 

Suca-saman, a house-builder. 

Autuigh, the sun, a day. 

Cuyem or Kiyem, the moon, 
a month. 

Tipantu, a year. 

K'tal, fire. 

Asee, hot. 

Chosee, cold. 

Atutuy, it is shivering cold." 


No. I. 

Account of the Archipelago of Chiloe, extracted chiefly from 
the Descripcion Histortal of that Province, ly P. R 
Pedro Gonzalez de Agueros. — Madrid, 1791. 

i. HE Province and Archipelago of Chik>6 extends from 
point Capitanes to Quilan, from latitude 41. 30. south to 44. 
Longitude from the meridian of TenerhTe 302. to 303. 25. 
On the north it is bounded by the continent, where the Juncos 
and Rancos, two unconverted nations, possess the country to^ 
wards Valdivia, to the north-east by the district of Osorno, a 
city no longer in existence, south by the Archipelago of Guai- 
tecas, east by the Cordillera, which separates it from Pata- 
gonia, and west by the Pacific Ocean. The inhabited part 
of the province extends from Maullin to Huilad, comprising 
forty leagues of latitude, and from 1 8. to 20. of longitude, 
and consisting of twenty-five islands. Ma Grande, Achao, 
Lemiii, Quegui, Chelin, Tanqid, Li?ilin, Llignua, Quenac, 
Meulin, Caguach, Alan, Apedu, Chaulinec, Vuta-Chauquis, 
Anigue, Chegnidu, Caucague, Calluco, Llaicha, Quenu,Taibon, 
Altaic, Chiduapi, and Knar. 

Isla Grande, being as its name imports the largest of these 
islands, is the most populous, and the seat of government. 
Castro, its capital, and the only city in the province, was 


founded in 1566, by the marshal D. Marten Ruiz de Gamboa, 
during the administration of the viceroy Lope Garcia de 
Castro, in Peru. 

The navigation of this Archipelago is very dangerous, from 
the strength and number of the currents, and nothing can be 
worse adapted for so perilous a sea than the boats which are 
used. These piraguas, as they are called, are without keel or 
deck. The planks of which they are made are laced together 
with strong withes, and calked with pounded cane leaves, over 
which the withes are passed : the cross timbers are fastened 
with tree-nails, In these vessels, so easily overset, the Chilotes, 
as the inhabitants of these islands are called, venture with a 
fearlessness which they derive from their being accustomed to 
danger, not from their skill in avoiding it. Their main suste- 
nance is from the sea, which is generally most bountiful when 
the earth is least so. The mode of fishing is, I believe, peculiar 
to themselves. At low water they stake in a large sweep of 
shore, knitting the stakes together with basket-work ; the flood 
covers these corrales, or pens, and at the ebb the fish are left 
there. A sea weed, which they call luche, is also used for 
food. They dry it, and then, by some unexplained process, 
form it into loaves or cakes, which are greatly esteemed not 
only in Chiloe, but even by the wealthy inhabitants of Lima. 
Seals are more numerous in the adjoining Archipelagos of 
Guaitecas and Guayneco : none but the Indians eat them, and 
their constant use of this rank food is said to impart to them 
so rank an- odour, that it is almost necessary to keep to wind- 
ward when you talk with them. Whales sometimes run them- 
selves aground here, though they are more frequent farther to 
the south: they have probably retired from a coast where they 
are persecuted, for ambergris was formerly found ia great 
abundance upon these shores, but is now rarely cast up. 

All the islands are mountainous or craggy, a few valleys 
among the hills, and the flat ground near the shore, are all 
lhat ajre cultivated. On this belt of cultivated ground all the 


settlements in Isla Grande are built, forty-one in number; 
there is a road across the mountains, but the whole of the in^ 
terior is waste. The Isle of Quinchau has six settlements, 
Lemui and Llaicha each four, Calbuco three, the other in- 
habited islands only one each, and on the continent there .are 
three. These pueblos may better be called parishes than any 
thing else ; for the houses are as scattered as the property i 
every one lives upon his land, and the church stands near the 
beach, with a few huts round it, erected merely for the pur- 
pose of lodging the parishioners when they coine to mass, or 
any festival. In the whole Archipelago there are but four 
places where the houses are near enough together to assume 
the appearance of a village, Chacao, Calbuco, the city of 
Gastro, and the Puerto de San Carlos. This last is the largest 
and most flourishing. In 1774 it contained sixty houses, and. 
four hundred and sixty- two inhabitants: in 1791 there were 
above two hundred houses, and the population exceeded 
eleven hundred. But its prosperity is founded upon the ruin 
of Chacao ; for; till as late as 1?(>8, Chacao was the only port 
in the Archipelago. This harbour is very dangerous in con- 
secj of rocks and shoals, and is also exposed to the north 

an*. ,i-east. On this account, Don Carlos de Beranger, 

when governor of the province, recommended that a town 
should be built at Gacui del Ingles; and accordingly, in 1767, 
orders were issued by the court of Madrid to that effect. "The 
bay was then newly named Bahia del Rey, and the harbour, 
Puerto de San Carlos. It is situated in latitude 41. 5J. south. 
Ships are frequently wrecked at the entrance, but this is en- 
tirely occasioned by the tremendous hurricanes which come on 
suddenly, and completely hide the land. The port itself is 
good. San Carlos is now the seat of government. 

It is difficult to Understand what motives could have in» 

duced the Spaniards to settle in this miserable country, when. 

there was the whole of this side of South America open to 

them. Where there is gold or silver to be found, men wiH 

VQfc. II. B b 



settle, however barren and unfavourable the country— where 
wealth is to be acquired by trade they will herd together, no 
matter how pestilential the situation. But Chiloe offers 
nothing to avarice, and only a bare and comfortless subsistence 
to industry. Perhaps the main part of the first settlers were 
from Chili, families who had escaped from the Araucanos, 
who wanted means to remove themselves to Peru, or to subsist 
if they had got there, and were glad therefore of any place 
of rest and security. There is, I believe, no other colony in 
the world to which Europeans have carried so few of their 
arts and comforts ; nor indeed have they ever attempted to 
colonize against so many natural disadvantages, except in two 
instances, the project of Philip II. to fortify the straits of Ma- 
galhaens, and the unaccountable settlements of the Norwe- 
gians in Greenland. It frequently rains during a whole moon 
without intermission, and this rain is accompanied by such 
tremendous hurricanes, that the largest trees are torn up by 
the roots, and the inhabitants do not feel safe in their houses. 
Even in January, which is their midsummer, they have often- 
times long and heavy rains. During the height of the storm, 
if the clouds open to the south, however small may hje this 
opening, fine weather succeeds ; but first the wind com*/. s^4!< 
denly from the south, with even greater violence than it had 
blown before from the opposite quarter, and with a sound as 
sudden and as loud as the discharge of cannon. Vessels are 
never in more danger than during these tremendous changes; 
the storm passes with rapidity proportioned to its violence, 
and then the weather clears. Thunder and lightning are 
seldom perceived here. The islands suffered severely by an 
earthquake in 173J, and a few days afterwards, it is said, 
that an exhalation or cloud of fire, coming from the north, 
passed over the whole Archipelago, and set fire to the woods in 
many of the islands of Guaitecas. It is said also, that those 
islands were covered with ashes, and that vegetation did not 
begin to appear upon them again till the year 1750. 


Notwithstanding the quantity of rain which falls, the climate 
is not unhealthy ; but never had people more cause to believe 
literally that the ground was cursed to bring forth thorns and 
thistles, and that it is the punishment of man to eat bread 
with the sweat of his brow tfcan these poor Chilotes. They 
are proofs of the authenticity of this anathema, says their 
historian; for perhaps there are no other people in the world 
who labour so hard, and procure so little. Such is their 
poverty, that there is no iron among them, or at least so little, 
that the family which happens to possess an axe, lays it by as 
a treasure. Their substitute for the plough consists in two 
separate stakes, about seven or eight feet long : one end is 
sharp, the other inserted in a round ball. These they take 
one in each hand, fix the point against the ground, and force 
the ends on with the body, which is protected with a sheep- 
skin during this rude exertion. Laborious as this mode must 
needs be, even in the lightest soil, it is rendered still more so 
by the myrtle-roots which overspread the open country. The 
little corn which is raised can never be left to ripen, because 
of the rains j they cut it before it is ripe, and hang its sheaves 
in the sunshine, if the sun happens to shine, otherwise they 
let it dry within doors. Bread is of course a delicacy re- 
served for great occasions; and so little is the ordinary stock 
of corn, that many families let it remain in the ear till it is 
wanted for use. Good potatoes supply the want of bread, and 
Chiloe produces better than any part of Peru. 

Apples and strawberries are their only fruit ; these are good, 
and plentiful. The woods produce a plant called quilineja, 
much resembling the espart • of Spain, from which they manu- 
facture their cables, and with various leafless parasitic plants, 
which supply the want of smaller cordage. A species of wild 
cane serves to roof their houses, and its leaves are the fodder 
of the few horses which are kept. A tree, which the Spaniards 
call alerse, and the Indians lahual, grows abundantly upon that 
part of the continent which is included in this province, and 


furnishes the main branch of their external commerce. FrOn* 
50 to 60,000 planks are annually sent to Lima., The wood 
grows to a great size, and its grain is so even that it is cleft 
with wedges into boards of any thickness, even better and 
smoother than could be done bj the saw. Neither Agueros 
nor Falkner had ever seen the tree; the latter supposed it, 
from the description which he had heard, to be of the fir tribe! 
If plants or seeds of this tree, be says, were brought over into 
England, it is very probable they would thrive here", the climate 
being as cold as in the country where it grows : and it is there 
reckoned to be the most valuable timber they have, both for 
it* beauty and duration. The bark of the "abrse makes ex- 
cellent oakum for that part of a ship which is under water, 
but must not be used when it would be exposed to the sun 
and air. 

They export also the wood of the luma for axle-trees and 
poles of coaches, of the hazle for ship-building, and especially 
for oars, and chests and boxes of cypress and of ciruelillo. 
Hams form a main article of export, pigs being the only ani- 
mals which abound in this Archipelago, because they keep 
themselves. Few sheep are kept, enough however to furnish 
employment for the women with their wool. They make the 
poncho, two of which are a full year's work for a woman, 
working as they do without a loom ; the warp is stretched 
and fastened with pegs, and they then weave with their 
finders, and with this painful industry what they make is re- 
markably fine, strong, and beautiful, They make also a 
smaller kind of poncho called lordillos, which are the ordinary- 
dress of the negroes at Lima; blankets and rugs, which are 
curiously wrought pa colours. Linen they weave in a loom. 

During their summer, when the vessels from Callao arrive, 
San Carlos is like a fair. This is the oniy opportunity the Chi- 
lores have of supplying themselves with any thing except 
what they produce themselves, and their only opportunity 
also of disposing of their surplus produce. There is no ci& 

1 : ; 


eulating medium, and trade is therefore carried on by barter. 
This would leave the islanders at the mercy of the Lima mer- 
chants, if it were not for the interference of government. 
When the first ship arrives, the cabildo, or municipality of 
San Carlos, fixes the price in money at which every thing shall 
be rated. It is obvious that such an interference is absolutely 
necessary, the Chilotes being obliged, when they bought, to 
pay what the seller chose to demand, and when they sold, to 
take what the purchaser chose to give. Still it would ma- 
terially benefit them if they could export their goods them- 
selves; but the whole Archipelago does not contain one vessel 
large enough for a voyage to the ports of Peru, or even Chili. 
The soldiers who were formerly paid in clothes and other 
effects, are, by a late regulation, that is about eighteen or 
twenty years ago, to be paid in specie. If this be continued, 
it must have produced an important change in Chiloe. The 
militia of the Archipelago consists pf 1,569 men, including 
officers: they do garrison duty, but receive no pay, nor even 
ratios. San Carlos has a garrison of regular troops, consisting 
of 33 artillerymen, 53 dragoons, and 53 infantry. 

There are but two classes of people in Chiloe, Spaniards 
and Indians, no negroes, and no mixed breed. Why there 
are no negroes is explained by the poverty of the islanders; 
how it has happened that the other races have not intermingled 
is not explained. This is the more remarkable, because no. 
where, perhaps, has so extraordinary a change in language 
taken' p^ce us among these islands; during the last half 
century that of the Indian inhabitants has changed : they now 
speak a language of which the words are Spanish, but all 
the inflections, syntax, and idioms, Chilese, that is to say,* 


The Spaniards, both men and women, go barefoot, except 

* This very remarkable fact is noticed by Hervas in his &reat w»fk 
Upon languages. Agueros has overlooked it. 



a few of the principal families, who sacrifice convenience to 
pride ; for in a country so continually wet, it is safer to expose 
the feet than to cover them. The men usually wear the 
poncho instead of the cloak. Their houses, or rather hovels, 
are built of wood, and the crevices stopped with pieces of 
sheep-skin, and with rags ; the roofs are of thatch, which rots so 
soon in that rainy climate, that it must frequently be renewed. 
They consist of a single room, in which the family, the 
poultry, and whatever cattle they happen to possess, are 
equally accomodated. The few who can afford it build better 
houses, but still of wood, divide them into several apartments, 
wainscot them within, and roof them with planks. Fires are 
very frequent, but as the houses are scattered, the mischief 
does not extend. 

Such is the inclemency of the weather, and such the state 
of the roads, that a family in one of these solitary habitations 
is often weeks, and sometimes months, without any communi- 
cation with their neighbours. There is neither hospital, phy- 
sician), nor physic, in the Archipelago. A sick person is laid 
upon a bed, or upon a heap of skins, close to a large fire, and 
there they let him lie. The missionaries could find no books 
to teach the children to read ; and when they would have 
taught them to write, there was no paper. Necessity produced 
a substitute : they made wooden tablets, which, like slates, 
could be washed clean when they were filled. Such is the miser- 
able situation of the Spaniards in Chilo6, they dare not leave 
their wretched birth-place in the hope of bettering their for- 
tunes ; for those who have attempted it have been cut off by 
the small-pox, a disease unknown in the Archipelago. The 
whole population, in ] 783, amounted to 23,477, of whom 
1 1,985 were Spaniards.— -E. E. 


No. IL 

Account of the Native Triles who inhahit the Southern Extre- 
mity of South America, extracted chiefly from Falkner's 
description of Patagonia. 

ERCILLA has made the name of Araucano so celebrated, 
that it must not be changed. But it properly belongs only to 
those hordes of the Picunches who possessed the country of 


The nations who inhabit this extremity of South America 

are known among themselves by the general names of Mo- 

luches and Puelches. The Moluches, or warlike people, as 

the word implies, are divided into the Picuuches, or people of 

the north, Pehuenches, people of the fine country, and Huil- 

liches, people of the south. The first of these inhabit the 

mountains from Coquimbo to somewhat below Santiago, in 

7hili. The second border upon them to the north, and extend 

rom the parallel of Valdivia^o 35 degrees south latitude. 

oth these are included in history under the name of Arau- 

nos. The long and obstinate wars with the Spaniards, with 

2 Puelches, and with one another, have greatly diminished 

>ir numbers; but they have been still more diminished by 

havoc which brandy has made among them. For this 

irsed liquor, as it may well be called by the American 



Indians, they have been known to sell their wives and children: 
the madness which it produces occasions bloodshed ; and the 
deaths which then happen bring on deadly feuds. The 
small-pox has nearly completed the work of drunkenness and 
of war; and when Falkuer left the country they were not able 
to muster four thousand men among them all. 

The Huilliches possess the country from Valdivia to the 
straits of Magalhaens. They are subdivided into four nations, 
who are improperly classed under one general appellation, 
inasmuch as three of them are evidently a different race from 
the fourth. That branch which reaches to the sea of Chiloe, 
and beyond the lake of Nahuelhuaupi, speaks the general 
language of Chili, differing only from the Pehueuches and Pi- 
cunches in pronunciation. The others speak a mixed lan- 
guage of the Moluche and Tehuel (or Patagonian) tongue,and 
are, by their greater stature, manifestly of Patagonian origin. 
Collectively they are called the Vuta, or Great Huilliches; 
separately, Chonos, who inhabit the Archipelago of Chiloe, 
and its adjoining shores. Poy-yus, or Peyes, who possess the 
coast from latitude 48. to something more than 51. and Key- 
yus, or Keyes, who extend from thence to the Straits. The 
Moluches maintain some flocks of sheep for their wool, and 
sow a small quantity of corn. 

The Piieiches, or eastern people, so called hy those of Chili, 
are bounded on the west by the Moluches, south by the Straits, 
east by the sea, and north by the Spaniards. They are sub- 
divided into four tribes: 1. The Taluhets, a wandering race, 
who prowl over the country from the eastern side of the first 
Desaguadero, as tar as the lakes of Guanacache, in the juris- 
diction of St. Juan and St. Luis, de la Punta. There are some 
also in the jurisdiction of Cordova, on the rivers Quarto, Ter- 
cero, and Segundo. When the Jesuits were expelled they 
could scarcely raise two hundred lighting men of their own 
nation, and not above five hundred with all their allies. 
2, The Diuihets, also a wanderiug race, who border west- 


warily upon the Pehuenches, from 35 to 93 degrees south, 
and extend along the rivers Sanquel, Colorado, and Hueyque, 
nearly to the Casuhati on the east. This nation, and that of 
the Taluhets, arc collectively called Pampas by the Spaniards, 
whose settlements in Tucunmn and on the southern shore of 
the Plata they have always infested, and sometimes endangered. 
3. The Chechehets, or people of the east: the country which 
tliev chiefly frequent is between the rivers Hueyque and the 
first Desaguadero, or river Colorado, and from thence to the 
second Desaguadero, or river Negro. They are a wandering 
race, tall and stout like the Patagons, but they speak a dif- 
ferent language : their dispositions are friendly and inoffensive, 
but when provoked they are a bold and active enemy. The 
small-pox has reduced them to a very small number. 4. The 
Tehuelhets, or in their own language Tehuel-Kunnees, southern 
men; these are the Patagons. They are divided into many 
tribes, all of whom, and the Chechehets also, are called by 
the Spaniards Serranos, or Mountaineers. The Leuvuches, 
who seem to be the head of all the Serranos, live on the river 
Negro. They speak the language of the Chechehets, with a 
small mixture of the Tehuel tongue. It was their policy to 
be at peace with the Spaniards, that they might hunt securely 
in the immense plains, or pampas, as they are called, of 
Buenos Ayres, but about the year 1740 they were provoked 
by a most wanton and treacherous attack to take arms; and 
Buenos Ayres would probably have been destroyed, had not 
the. Jesuit missionaries appeased these injured people. The 
Tehuelhets are more numerous than all the otheV Indians of 
■these parts; they are the enemies of the Moluches, and had 
they been as well supplied with horses, these latter, who are so 
terrible to the Spaniards, would long since have been destroyedo 
To the south of these live the ChulilaurKunnees, and Se« 
huau-Kunnees, who are the most southern of the equestrian 
tribes. The country beyond them to the straits is possessed 
by the last of the Tehuel nations, who are called Yacana* 

Kunnees, or foot people : an inoffensive race, fleet of foot, and 
subsisting chiefly upon fish. The other Tehuelhets and ihe 
Huiliiches sometimes attack them for the purpose of making 
slaves. The ordinary stature of all the Tehuel tribes is from 
six to * seven feet. None of the Puelches either keep sheep 
or sow, but depend entirely upon hunting, for which purpose 
they keep great numbers of dogs. 

Of the religion of the Moluches, Molina has given a full ac- 
count. The belief in an infinite number of spirits, good and 
evil, is common to all the tribes south of the Plata, north of 
which a different language and different form of superstition 
prevails to Ihe Orinoco. It does not appear that the Pueiciies 
acknowledge any of these spirits as supreme over the others. 
The Taluhets and Diuihets call a good spirit Soychu, or he 
who presides in the land of strong drink. The Tehuelhets call 
him Guayava-Kunnee, lord of the dead. The Tehuelhets and 
Cliechehets call an evil spirit Atskannakauatz, the other 
Puelches, Vaiichu. Neither of these names are explained by 
Falkrer, nor does his Vocabulary include any thing which can 
explain them. Huecuvu must be another name for the same 
evil beings ; for a great sandy desert, which the Chechehets 
never enter lest they should be overwhelmed there, is called 
Huecuvu Mapu, the devil's country. 

Each family, as among the northern Indians, is of a cast 
or tribe which they distinguish by the name of an animal : 
some are of the cast of the tiger, some of the lion, some of 
the guanaco, of the ostrich, &c. and they believe that each 
cast had its particular creator, who resided in some huge cavern 
under lake or hill, whither all of that cast will go after death, 
to enjoy the happiness of being eternally drunk. These good 
spirits, they believe, made the world, and then made men in 
their caves. To the Indians they gave the spear, the bow 

* It is curious that Falkner, though this is his own statement, which is 
repeatedly confirmed in his book, should yet say he never heard of that 
gigantic race which others have mentioned. 


and arrow, and the ball and thong; to the Spaniards, fire- 
amis and swords, and then sent them abovp ground. Animals 
were created in like manner in these subterraneous caves ; 
those who were the nimblest came out first ; but when the bulls 
and cows were coming out last of all, the Indians were 
frightened at the sight of their horns, and stopped up the 
mouth of their caves. The Spaniards were wiser, and thus 
they explain why they had no kine till the Spaniards intro- 
duced them. It is their opinion that all the animals who have 
been created below are not yet come out. 

All the evil which happens either to man or beast they at- 
tribute to evil spirits, who are continnally wandering about 
the world ; even fatigue is attributed to their agency. Each 
of their priests, or rather jugglers, is supposed to have two of 
these spirits as his familiars, and their souls after death are 
associated to them, and perform the same works of mis- 
chief. The jugglers are of both sexes, but it seems as if it 
were thought an occupation unbefitting a man, for the wizard* 
are compelled to dress like women, and restricted from mar- 
riage. Witches are under no such restriction. They are 
generally chosen while children : those who are most effemi- 
nate are selected, but all who are afflicted with epilepsy, or 
St. Vitus's dance, are considered as essentially marked out by 
the evil spirit themselves for their service. It is a dangerous 
service, for if any calamity befal either chiefs or people, the 
priests are frequently put to death. 

No ceremonies are performed towards the good spirits; 
and that which is addressed to the evil ones is improperly de- 
nominated worship by Falkner. To perform it, he says, they 
assemble together in the tent of the wizard, who is shut up 
from the sight of the rest in a corner of the tent. He has a 
small drum, one or two round calabashes, with small sea- 
shells in them, (the maraca probably of the Brazilian tribes) 
and some square bags of painted' bide, in which he keeps his 
spells. He begius the ceremony by making a strange noise 


with his drum and rattle-box, after which he feigns a fit ©r 
struggle with the evil spirit, who, it is then supposed, has en- 
tered into him ; keeps his eyes lifted up, distorts the features 
of his face, foams at the mouth, screws up his joints, and 
after many violent and distorting motions, remains stiff and 
motionless, resembling a man seized with an epilepsy. After 
some time he comes to himself, as having got the better of the 
demon: next feigns within his tabernacle a faint, shrill, 
mournful voice, as of the evil spirit, who by this dismal cry 
is supposed to acknowledge himself subdued, and then, from 
a kind of tripod, answers all questions that are put to him. 
Whether his answers be true or false is of no great conse- 
quence, because if his intelligence should prove false, it is the 
fault of the spirit. On all these occasions the wizard is well 

They make skeletons of their dead. This practice, which 
prevails on the Orinoco also, is not used by any of the tribes 
between the Orellana and the Plata. One of the most dis- 
tinguished women-performs the dissection: the entrails are 
burnt, and the bones, after the flesh has been cut oil' as clean 
as possible, are buried till the remaining fibres decay. Within 
a year they must be removed to the burial place of the family. 
This is the custom of the Moluches and Pampas, but the Ser- 
ranos place the bones on high upon a frame-work of canes or 
twigs, to bleach in the sun and rain. While the dissector is 
at work upon the skeleton, the Indians walk round the tent, 
■ covered with long mantles of skins, and having their faces 
blackened with soot, singing in a mournful voice, and striking 
the ground with their long spears, to drive away the evil 
spirits. Some go and condole with the widow and relations 
of the dead, if these persons be wealthy enough to pay them 
for their mourning with bells, beads, and other such trinketry : 
it is not a sort of condolence to be gratuitously offered, for 
they prick their arms and tlrtghs with thorns, and feel pain at 
least, if not sorrow, The horse s of the dead are immediately 


killed, that he may ride upon them in Alhue Mapu, the country 
of the dead ; only a few are reserved to carry his bones to the 
sepulchre, and for the last ceremony. 

When the bones are to be removed they pack them up in a 
hide, and lay them on the favourite horse of the deceased, 
which they adorn in their best manner with mantles, feathers, 
&c. and in this manner they travel to the family burial-place, 
which is sometimes three hundred leagues off, so wide are 
their wanderings. The Moluches and the Pampas bury them 
in large square pits, about a fathom deep: the bones are put 
together and tied in their places, then clothed with their best 
robes, and ornamented with beads and feathers, all of which 
are cleansed or changed once a year. They are placed in a 
row, sitting, with all the weapons and other things which be- 
longed to the dead. The vault is then covered over with 
beams and twigs, over which the earth is thrown. An old 
matron from each tribe is appointed to take care o f these 
graves. She opens them every year, and clothes and cleans 
the skeletons ; for which she is held in great veneration. The 
bodies of the horses are placed round the grave, raised upon 
their feet, and supported by stakes. These graves are in 
general not far from their ordinary habitations. Every year 
they pour upon them some bowls of their first made chica, 
and drink to the good health of the dead. The Tehuelhets 
and southern tribes carry their dead to a great distance from 
their dwellings, into the desert by the sea-coast, where they 
set them in order above ground, with their horses round them. 
Tt is probable that they reduce them to skeletons only when 
they have to carry them a considerable distance, for in the 
Voyage of Discovery, made in 1746 by the St. Antonio, 
from Buenos Ayres to the Straits, the Jesuits who accom- 
panied that expedition found one of these tents or houses 

of the dead. On one side there were six banners, as they may 

i » 

be called, of cloth of various colours, each about ha!f-ell 
square, set upon high poles, which were fked in the ground* 


on the other five dead horses stuffed with straw, and supported 
each upon three stakes. Within the house they found two 
ponchos, or Indian garments, extended, and the bodies of two 
men and one woman, upon which the hair and the flesh* were 
still remaining. On the top of the house was another poncho, 
rolled up and tied with a coloured woollen band, and in this 
a pole was fixed, like the pole of a vane, from which eight 
tassels of wool were suspended. 

Widows are cempelled to observe a rigorous mourning ; 
for a whole year after the husband's death they must keep 
themselves close shut up in their tents, having no communi- 
cation with arty one, nor ever stirring out except for the 
common necessaries of life. They must abstain from the flesh 
of horses, ostriches and guanacoes, and from beef: they must 
never wash face or hands, but blacken themselves with soot ; 
and any breach of chastity would be punished with death, by 
the relations of the husband, in both parties. 

The office of ya, or chief, is hereditary, and all his sons 
may be chiefs if they can get Indians to follow them ; but the 
dignity is of so little advantage, that it is not coveted. The 
chief has the power of protecting those who apply to him, 
of composing or silencing disputes, or of delivering up an 
offender to be put to death. In these cases his will is the law. 
Wherever there is no other law it is better to be entirely law- 
less. These petty despots are prone to bribery, and will sa- 
crifice their vassals, and even their kindred, when well paid 
for it. They are esteemed in proportion to their eloquence ; 
and the chief who is not eloquent has an orator to harangue 
the people for him. When two or more tribes form an alli- 
ance against a common enemy, they chuse an apo, or com- 
mander in chief, from the ablest or most celebrated of the 
Caziques. But this honour, though still nominally elective, has 

* Falkner therefore is mistaken in saying they were sheletofls. An 
abstract from the original journals is printed by Charlevoix, in his Hist, 
du Paraguay, 


for many years been hereditary among the southern nations in 
the family of Cangapol. 

The hereditary Chiefs or Elmens, as Falkner calls them, (the 
Ulmenes of Molina) have no power to take any thing from their 
vassals, nor can they oblige them to perform any kind of work 
without paying them: on the contrary, they must treat them "* 
kindly, and relieve their wants, or they will put themselves 
under the protection of another. Many of the Elmens 
therefore waive the privilege of their birth, and refuse to have 
any vassals, because they cost them much, and yield little 
profit. But if any body of people were to attempt to live 
together without a chief at their head, they would undoubtedly 
be killed or carried away as slaves ; so hostile are even such 
despots as these to republicanism . 

The husband buys his wife of her nearest relations, with or 
without her consent ; he then takes her as his property. But 
if the woman has fixed her affections on another, she some- 
times wears out the patience of her purchaser, and he turns her 
away, or sells her to the man of her choice, but seldom treats 
her ill. Widows and orphans are at their own disposal. The 
Yas or Elmens have two or three wives at a time; the 
common people may have as many as they please also, but 
wives are dear, and they have rarely more than one. The 
lives of the women are one continued scene of labour : they 
fetch wood and water; they dress the food; they make, mend, 
and clean the tents ; they cure the skins, and make them into 
mantles; they spin, and make the ponchos-, they pack up 
every thing for a journey, even the tent-poles ; they load, un- 
loac^, and settle the baggage ; straiten the girths of the saddles, 
and carry the lance before their husbands, and at the journey's 
end set up the tent. Sickness or pregnancy, however far ad- 
vanced, never exempt them from these labours ; and it would 
be in the highest degree ignominious for their husbands to 
assist them. The women of the noble families may have 


slaves to relieve them ; but should they be without thera, they 
must undergo the same labours as the rest. 

Yet the tribes at this extremity of America are not brutal 
to their women, like those by the Northern Ocean. The 
marriages are only to endure during pleasure. They who 
have children seldom forsake each other. The husband pre- 
lects his wife even if she is in the wrong ; and if he detects 
her in any criminal intercourse, all his anger falls upon the 
paramour, who is cruelly beaten, unless, after the modern 
fashion of England, he atones by paying for the injury which 
he has committed. Their jugglers will sometimes bid them 
send their wives into the woods, to prostitute themselves to the 
first person they meet This is plainly a device of these 
wretches to make amends for the celibacy to which they are 
restricted. The husbands readily obey, but there are women 
in* whom natural modesty overpowers superstition, who refuse 
obedience to their husbands on such an occasion, and set the 
wizard at defiance. 

Skins are worn by ail these tribes. All, except the Ser- 
ratios, Weave mantles of yarn, beautifully dyed with many 
colours, which, when wrapped round the body, reach from 
the shoulders to the calf of the leg : they have another of 
the same kind round the waist ; and besides these, a small 
three-cornered leathern apron, two corners are tied round the 
waist, the other is past between the legs, and fastened behind,. 
They tie up their hair behind, with the points upward, binding 
it many times above the head with a woollen band ; but they 
are fond of wearing hats when they can procure them from 
the Spaniards. They paint their face red or black, and wear 
necklaces and bracelets of sky-blue beads. On horseback 
they use a peculiar sort of frock, which has a siit in the 
middle, through which they put their heads, and hang down 
to the knees, or sometimes to the feet. The stockings or 
^;oots which both sexes use are of the rudest kind : they con- 


sist merely of the skin of a horse's thigh and leg, flayed off 
whole, dried, then softened with grease, and suppled by 
wringing. The women wear straw hats, in shape like that of 
of the Chinese. 

Their defensive armour consists of a helmet made of 
double bull's-hide, and shaped like a broad-brimmed hat ; a 
tunic or shirt, with short sleeves, of anta's skin, three or four 
fold ; this is very heavy, but effectually resists the arrow and 
spear, and is said to be musket proof, They use also on foot 
a large square unwieldy shield of bull's-hide. The Tehuel- 
hets and Huilliches sometimes poison their arrows: their 
spears are of cane, four or five yards long, and pointed with 
iron. When they can get them from the Spaniards they use 
swords. The bowl and double bowl, and thong, they use 
both in battle and in hunting. The single one is about a 
pound weight : they aim it at the enemy's head, to knock out 
his brains ; with the double one they can fasten a man to his 
I*orse, and effectually entangle man or beast, or both.— E. E. 


VOL. 1 



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